When my children were smaller, I had an impressive experience. On Christmas Eve — when they got all the presents from us parents, the grandparents, aunts and uncles — they got into a real frenzy of ripping off all that wrapping paper. They were so overwhelmed, they hardly looked at the presents themselves.  

There was paper, plastic and ribbons all over the place. Once everything was opened, the kids finally sitting in the middle of the room with disappointed faces asking, “Was that all? Is it already over?”  

Unwrapping frenzy for christmas?

In reality, most of our children are probably getting far too many presents anyhow. But what also bothered me was all that beautiful packaging ripped up and ready for the garbage. 

That was the last Christmas that I used gift wrapping paper. Instead, I sat down and sewed a couple of gift bags in several sizes. I quickly found that there are so many beautiful cotton fabrics with prints that fit every occasion. You could also reuse the fabric from old shirts or bed linen. Soon, I was using these bags for gifts throughout the year.  

Most of those bags are used within my own family, so I usually get them back. But I also use these for my friends. I realized that I’d rather sit down and sew a bag that is then part of the present and might get used again. Plus, it helps spread the idea! 

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