Giving and receiving gifts is a generous gesture. Having wrapped your gift in a fancy wrapper with ribbons and curls creates an element of surprise. Wrapping a gift today is considered a true form of art in many circles and can make an ordinary package look extraordinary.
Giving gifts is as old as time as is the wrapping of the gifts. Frankincense, gold and myrrh are discussed in the Bible as gifts presented to baby Jesus wrapped in fine fabrics.
For hundreds of years, many families have exchanged gifts or given gifts on various holidays. The wrapping of these gifts almost always plays a large part in any present.
Early on simple tissue paper or brown paper was used for gift wrapping. Gifts were sometimes presented in decorated cornucopias or paper baskets in the 19th century. Gifts were tied up with string and sealing wax. There was no technology available to mass produce a decorated, foldable, paper. In 1890s, colored ink could be printed fluidly on stiffer papers.
The first American gift wrap company was Hy-Sill Manufacturing Inc., founded by Eli Hyman and Morris Silverman in1903.
Hallmark, the biggest name in gift wrapping today, started in the gift wrap market by accident in 1917.
Rolls of adhesive tape were sold in dispensers with cutter blades from 1932. Small gift tags and a type of sticky decorative ribbon were developed at this time and often came free with matching wrapping paper.
The opening of the package is given the honor as a ritual act. Some wrapping styles have the interplay of what is revealed and what is concealed, with hinges, flaps or cuts hinting at contents but not disclosing them.
Traditionally, gift wrapping was done with paper only, but today it can be a decorative box or bag, tissue or using gift wrap paper made up of different types of materials.
These days, stick-on bows and cascade ribbons are also used to decorate the gifts. You can also get a plain-colored or brown paper gift wrap and then unleash your creativity on it by decorating it with stickers, stamps or illustrations.
Varieties are available in at many price points in varying quality and in different weights plus different designs. There are also themed gift wraps available which have designs based upon the occasion.
If you are feeling eco-friendly, try wrapping a gift with today's newspaper, old magazines or even shopping bags. If you have any extra fabric left over from a project, use that as gift wrap or even burlap sacks from the store can make an interesting covering for your present.
Heavier paper is required for gifts that have sharp corners or if there is a chance for the paper/wrap to be torn.
Some people may also use wine bags as these are specially designed to hold bottles of wine to protect them from breaking the bottle or breaking through the bag.
Carefully consider what you are wrapping before choosing gift wrap for a present. Take weight, size and other factors such as significance into consideration.
Choices the type of gift wrap or wrapping methods to use depends entirely on you, your gift and the occasion. There is an endless supply of gift wrap choices available on the Internet, in catalogs and in retail stores. You only need to decide what you want.
No matter what material or style is used, the way a gift is presented as well as the person presenting the gift should make the recipient feel happy and special.