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Furoshiki: DIY Fabric Gift Wrap

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Traditional gift wrap feels like such a huge waste, doesn't it? I remember Christmas morning when I was a kid: after the gifts were open, it was time to clean up, and that meant picking up heaps of single-use disposable paper, ribbons, and bows and tossing them in the trash and the recycle bin. You spent so much time and care choosing thoughtful, sustainable gifts, I bet that you want to choose gift wrap that's just as good for the planet!

Furoshiki is a Japanese gift wrap method that uses reusable fabric instead of disposable paper. Here's how you can make your own furoshiki - both sewn and no-sew methods - and how to tie it.

How to Sew a Furoshiki

A typical furoshiki is between 18 and 28 inchies square, and the size you need depends on the size of your gift. If you want to be on the safe side, go with a 28" furoshiki. Sewing a furoshiki is as simple as sewing a cloth napkin. All that you need are:

  • Organic fabric of your choice, cut to 29" square
  • fabric scissors
  • iron
  • sewing machine, thread, and pins

You can use the same instructions in this cloth napkin video to make your furoshiki:

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From the Organic Authority Files

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Make a No-Sew Furoshiki

Any square (or even square-ish) fabric works well as a furoshiki. Since this method makes the wrapping part of the gift, you can use vintage or organic napkins, scarves, or tea towels as your furoshiki! If you don't have a fabric that's the right size, you can make your own furoshiki without sewing a stitch. You only need three supplies:

  • Organic fabric that's at least 28" square.
  • Iron
  • Pinking shears - these are special scissors that cut a no-fray edge. You can find them at craft and sewing stores.

Iron your fabric, so it's nice and flat. This will make it easier to cut a nice, straight edge. Then, use your pinking shears to cut your fabric to 28" X 28". Give it one more pass with the iron, and you're ready to wrap!

How to Wrap a Furoshiki

You can use different wrapping methods depending on what gift you're giving, and this video does a great job of highlighting some common methods.

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Once you're done wrapping, you can give the gift as-is, or you can embellish your furoshiki gift with ribbon, mini ornaments, or anything to add a little pizzazz!

Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by lirontocker

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