Sewing pattern tissue is a great "green" alternative to store bought tissue, and lends a creative spirit to your gift. Browse you local thrift store for vintage sewing patterns, which can be picked up for about 25-35 cents an envelope. Don't worry about looking for nice images on the front of the envelope - just find one that has a lot of tissue inside, and that contains tissue that has not been cut. This tissue can be used just like regular tissue paper to cushion your gift - just scrunch and insert into the box. Vintage measuring tape can be used in lieu of ribbon. Add, on a sewing themed gift tag and your packaging will be as special as the gift inside! You can combine all these elements together to create a "Gift Packaging Kit" as well, which could be a gift in itself - Your recipient would have everything they need to package creatively on their own. Here's how to create a kit...
Turn the steam setting off, and iron each sheet of tissue using a medium setting. Not all of the creases will come out, but get the pieces as smooth as possible.
Using a yard stick, measure out, mark with a pencil, and cut the large pattern pieces into smaller rectangles. There is no set size for tissue paper so do what you like (I made mine 22X28 inches). Make as many rectangles as you can, or as many as you desire to include in your "Gift Packaging Kit."
Fold each piece somewhat like a map so that it resembles store bought tissue.
Stack your folded tissue paper, and layer on gift tags and vintage measuring tape to complete the kit.
Gift tags that fit the theme of vintage sewing can be easily made by scanning images from vintage pattern catalogs, the fronts of vintage pattern envelopes, or from vintage sewing books (If you don't have access to these, search around the internet - flickr is a good start - to find pictures you can blow up and use for this purpose). Cut the images out and glue onto coordinating scrapbook paper. Glue cardstock on the back for stability, and punch a hole in the top for affixing to the package.
Vintage measuring tape can be found at your local thrift store or on ebay. If you cannot locate any vintage measuring tape, purchase one new at your local craft store, or use twill tape or ribbon printed to look like measuring tape. I've boughten some at Michael's before (although I can't locate it on their website). And, Scrapbook Creations, Alpha Stamps, and European Papers all offer variations as well. The ribbon printed to look like measuring tape typically runs about 99 cents a yard.
Connect the measuring tape and tags to the tissue by using a vintage or new piece of lace (which the end user can also use to tie the gift tags to the package if needed). You can also include a handmade tag listing the contents of the "Gift Packaging Kit."
Make your own tag listing out the contents of your kit, or use mine.
Variations to the vintage sewing theme could include:
- For Christmas packaging, use thin tinsel or garland instead of measuring tape, and vintage Christmas cards or Christmas themed tags instead of sewing themed ones.
- For a budding baker or cook, use bakers twine instead of measuring tape, and images from cookbooks instead of sewing images for the tags.
- For a Child's birthday theme, use rickrack or pom pom trim instead of measuring tape, and images from a vintage party book for the tags (Betty Crocker's Parties for Children is a good one).