December 17, 2015

Christmas Beauty or Christmas Trash?

It’s a hard choice that everyone has to make at Christmas, if they even think about it at all. It’s a battle of beauty versus best practices, gorgeous against garbage. It’s about wrapping Christmas presents. How do you concede having a tree full of presents wrapped in matching paper and bows in a Pinterest-worthy setup against the cost and inevitable mountain of trash that will be created?

I admit I’ve succumbed to beauty some years, buying two or three rolls of fancy paper.  I couldn’t resist the faux bois look with some red plaid ribbon for a nice lumberjack look (before lumberjack chic was a thing!) but most years I reuse the bags from Christmases past. An array of unmatched bags with any color tissue paper I had on hand dancing out of the top of the bags, fluffed well with my years of training from working at a Hallmark store throughout college. A self-professed tree hugger, I’m usually totally fine with the chaos of colors and the fact that it looks like I’m still in college, wrapping my presents in just anything.

But I’ve found a way to step up my game a bit this year with my more frequent Goodwill trips. Starting in September I found some Christmas and winter themed metal boxes that looked like they would be perfect to up the luxe factor of simple gifts. And for only a dollar, it was a no-brainer.

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This cute metal treasure chest shaped box is the perfect size to hold anywhere between 4-6 cookies or brownies, or a pair of sweet Christmas cupcakes. All it took was a little searching, a little washing, and a little baking to bring a sturdy castoff to a useful and reusable gift that can be passed from giftee to giftee for years to come.

The holiday themed cookies I chose this year are Chai Snickerdoodles rolled in colored sugar which have been a huge hit at my book club, the office, and at home. They are far too easy to make and are a little more special than the usual cookie selection that people are gifted with during the holidays. Add a candy cane or two, or maybe some bags of chai tea, and this is a gift that’s easy on the brain and budget but with a big impact.

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Although there probably aren’t as many Christmas or winter themed boxes still hanging out at the Goodwill as there were in September, any box can be dressed up with a bow or other stick on decoration. Plus, you know in January there’ll be plenty for those who can plan ahead really early!

One Comment

  1. We’ve sewn bags from Christmas fabric that we can reuse from year to year. If you want to up the wow factor – make the bags from rich fabrics like velvets and brocades, or use plain fabrics and dress the bags up with trims and appliqués. As in Sarah’s post at the beginning of December, a lot of fabric options can be found, not only in the linen sections, but in other sections of the thrift stores as well. Start after this Christmas to be ready for next year. A few straight seams and pretty ribbon is all thats needed