Introduction: Reusable Gift Box

About: I'm just a lady who likes making stuff. I got my degree in engineering but also enjoy cooking, sewing, knitting, gardening and backpacking, among other things.

I love giving presents, but I always feel a bit bad for using so much paper! I know it gets recycled afterwards, but I still felt a bit guilty. A few years ago, I came up with this way to reuse old shoe boxes into beautiful gift boxes that can be used over and over and get passed on to the next person. It's a bit more work than wrapping a gift normally, but I think the results are definitely worth it!

I've also found this is a great way to give delicate, breakable, or oddly shaped gifts, since the recipient just has to remove the top of the box, not tear all the paper off or flip the box around a lot and break whatever is inside!

Step 1: Materials

For this box you will need:

  • wrapping paper
  • scissors
  • tape
  • ribbon
  • bow
  • shoe box that fits whatever your gift is (in this case, a set of three handmade porcelain bowls)
  • tissue paper to cushion your gift inside the box

Step 2: Measure Out Your Wrapping Paper

Starting at one end of the wrapping paper about two inches from the end and far enough from the free edge of the paper so the paper can fold up and over the short end of the box, place the box on its side then roll it over so it's sitting on it's bottom, then roll it over to the other side and mark the wrapping paper about 2 inches from the edge of the box. Roll the box back to it's bottom then roll it up to the other short end and make another mark about 2 inches from the edge. Use these two marks to the out a rectangle from the wrapping paper.

Step 3: Wrap Each Half of the Box

Place your box in roughly the center of the wrapping paper and fold one end up and over the long side of the box, taping it in the center to the inside of the shoe box, then tape it near each corner. Fold it around the short sides of the box, then carefully fold the top of the wrapping paper over the short side of the box and tape it in place. There should be a triangle of wrapping paper next to the short end of the box. Crease that fold so it lies flat against the table. Repeat the process for the other side, then you should have a triangle of paper at each of the short ends of the boxes. Fold the tips of the paper over and then fold up the sides and tape them to the short sides of the box.

Repeat this entire process with the top half of the box.

Step 4: Add a Ribon

To make the package have that pretty, classic "gift" look, I like to add a ribbon and bow. Cut one piece of ribbon that wraps around one short end of the box lid and across so that it wraps over the other end of the box lid. Make sure it's centered and tape each end to the inside edges of the lid. Do the same going the other way and finish it off with a bow in the middle. If you don't have a bow, you can make one!

Step 5: Package and Present Your Gift!

Your box is done! I used some tissue paper that matched the wrapping paper to carefully pack the bowls into the box so they wouldn't slide around. Put the top on, and you're done! Make sure you tell the person receiving the gift not to flip it over or tear the wrapping and they can use it to give someone else a gift in the future!

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