Whatever holiday you happen to celebrate, there’s no question that winter is the season of gift giving, and by extension, the season of gift wrapping, too! But piles of wrapping paper rolls, tissue paper, gift bags, bows, and ribbon aren’t ever hot holiday decor, and if you have a lot of any of it, it can be a pain to try to keep it both accessible to use and hidden during holiday gatherings. The solution? Designate some part of your house to create a gift wrapping station – a corner of the garage or a guest room, or even a small closet, cabinet, or part of your laundry room – and get organized!
If the winter holidays are really the only time you do a lot of wrapping, you probably want your setup to be relatively small and temporary. With a small enough family, you could probably even get away with buying a simple Gift Wrap Organizer that folds up small but has individual pockets for all your wrapping accessories. You still have to unload and reload the case when you need to wrap stuff, but it’s a great way to keep all your stuff in one place (so you’ll never misplace that extra pair of scissors or your favorite spool of ribbon), and it’ll keep everything inside safe from water and dust between uses.
The next step up would be to install a permanent, if compact, storage fixture. This can be as simple as the slightly modified Pantry Organizer in the picture above – just mount the basket shelves at different heights to give yourself the storage you need. If the baskets aren’t deep enough to keep long wrapping paper rolls from tipping over, install a Cup Hook to either side and attach a bungee cord, string, or piece of elastic to hold them in place.
Crafty folks looking for something that’s a little more attractive can build a wrapping paper rack from scratch. The one above is made from just a few simple hardware store components: a three sided 2×4 wood frame glued or nailed to a thin wood panel backing, plus white doweling rods secured horizontally with a few more Cup Hooks, and vertically with holes drilled into the wood above and below. I especially like this design because it’s compact, but set up so you can unroll and cut off the paper or ribbon you need on demand without having to remove them from the rack. Especially handy people can probably find a way to install a setup like this into just about any cabinet or cupboard for just a few dollars worth of parts.
Closet bars work incredibly well for this, too, if you have a little nook or empty cabinet to install them in. Just grab one inexpensive closet bar (make sure it comes with the installation cups, like this Easy Track Rod) for every roll or two of paper you want to have easy access to, and install them staggered like in the photo above. This will allow you to reach up, pull down your paper or ribbon, and slice it off with your scissors or a Gift Wrap Cutter, just like butcher paper or postal shipping paper. Set up over a flat surface, you’ll have an instant wrapping and crafting HQ all year round. And if you need to reclaim the space later (or just reload your wrapping paper) the rods lift out easily and can be stowed during the off season.
If you’re looking to create a whole scale gift wrapping area that you want to remain intact year round, like the one above, I’d start with a good piece of Pegboard. It doesn’t have to be big or even especially heavy duty since you won’t be hanging anything heavy on them (though the Magnetic ones can be pretty neat if you’re up for the splurge), but aim for something at least as wide as your longest tube of wrapping paper.
You can either permanently secure the pegboard to your wall with heavy duty screws, or (if it’s a little smaller) attach mounts to the back and hang and remove it as needed. There’s a huge variety of different sized and shaped hooks available that hook into the holes in a piece of pegboard, and many of them work great with giftwrap – from simple Long Hooks to stow your ribbon to Curved Hooks that can hold a doweling rod to support a roll of wrapping paper. There are even Pegboard Shelves that hold a decent amount of weight and can be easily moved around on the board. Just make sure all the accessories you buy match the spacing on the pegboard you get!
With that setup, you’ll be able to build a wrapping paper wall as small as a vanity mirror or as big as the whole wall, but you’ll still need a place to sit. Any flat surface will do, but I recommend a desk with lots of drawers, and chair that the right height that you won’t have to hunch or reach to wrap. This makeshift ribbon holder, made out of a simple Plastic Basket and some small doweling rods is a great way to keep your drawers organized and manage overflow – and also makes a great tote if you’re using ribbon to spruce up your seasonal decor.
Finally, this ribbon holder is a great way to top off any wrapping organizer, no matter how big or small. It’s nothing more than some ribbon stacked on a Paper Towel Rack, but it’ll keep your ribbon in place and portable…and if you layer it right, it looks a little like a Christmas tree!
Whether you’re just looking for a way to get organized, or really want to build your own gift giving workshop, it really isn’t that hard to do. Any time you spend building your organizer is sure to save you twice that when you go to start wrapping your presents, and whatever money you spend is – at least to me – worth the peace of mind! How do you keep your wrapping supplies organized? I’d love to hear your tips and ideas!