Top Ten Things Not to Do Wrapping Presents

Gift wrapping no nos


I always enjoy wrapping presents. I pretty much avoid the “store gift wrap” in favor of the messes I create. I think putting oneself into the process is a way you can show the recipients of the gift that you really care. The inspiration for this post is every year of doing my own. I hope you enjoy it.

10 If you are gift wrapping, don’t think it’s the thought that counts. If you do, at best your wrapping will look like you didn’t think at all. At worst, your package will be mistaken for trash and never opened in the first place. (No wonder you didn’t get a thank you, Cassidy.)

9 If you are gift wrapping, do not try to use a fake box with Tiny the WWF champ who just enrolled in a court-ordered intensive course on how to handle disappointment. If you do at best, you won’t be in the room when Tiny opens the Tiffany box to find a screwdriver. At worst, although Tiny will do his best to control himself it may be more than one can expect. (You have been thinking of removing that dining room wall anyway right, Crane?)

8 If you are gift wrapping, do not use seasonally inappropriate paper. If you do, at best others will think you mentally unstable. At worst, friends and family will gather and determine what to do with you now that you have lost track of time. (Okay so you wanted to save a few bucks on paper, but Easter wrap was not the way to go, Clive.)

7 If you are gift wrapping, do not forget the nametags. If you do, at best you’ll remember each gift and who it goes to just by the wrapping. At worst, Uncle Phil will wonder what you are trying to say with the Lady Schick electric razor gift. (You thought for sure that red box was a bottle of bourbon, Cal. I wonder what aunt Helen thinks of it.)

6 If you are gift wrapping, do not forget to measure twice before cutting once. If you do, at best there is a smaller box that can be wrapped with your mistakes. At worst, you have another trip to the wrapping store to get additional supplies. (Too bad they are all out of Christmas wrap huh, Cameron? They have plenty of Easter wrap though.)

5 If you are gift wrapping, do not use the same paper for all the gifts. If you do, someone will recognize it as last year’s $0.99 Target sale item. At worst, your display under the tree will look like the packages were done by Mrs. Jones first grade class. (Why is everyone asking if these gifts are meant for a Toys for Tots donation, Carling?)

4 If you are gift wrapping, do not throw away the return receipts. If you do, at best all your gifts will be perfect. At worst, those gifts that were a little off the mark will show up next year. (You could have sworn you gave this scarf to your cousin last year huh, Carmichael?)

3 If you are gift wrapping, do not think more scotch tape will solve sloppy wrapping. If you do, at best your recipients will have a scissor handy to cut through. At worst, you’ll get calls about paper cuts and tape in kid’s hair. (Maybe taking more time would have been a good idea, Carver.)

2 If you are gift wrapping, do not try to create what you are not qualified to design. If you do, at best yours will be the last one opened. At worst, your package will end up looking like a bizarre thing that should be soaked in water before being disarmed. (Gotta wonder why your brother-in-law called the bomb squad. That grenade on top was a dummy right, Caster?)

1 If you are gift wrapping, do not think a bunch of sparkling confetti in the box will be well received. If you do, at best the recipient will be kind and not shoot you. At worst, the gift will be opened on the new white living room carpet. (You just know that stuff will be there until next year don’t you, Chadwick?)


  1. D.L Finn, Author · ·

    This is why i put everything in gift bags now…lol. Great list. I am pretty sure I’ve done everything on your list at one time or another:)

    1. Me too, DL. Me too. 😀

  2. Gwen Plano · ·

    Sooo funny. I really loved the photo; the package could have been wrapped by one of my sons. 😀 Very clever list, John, practice makes perfect, right? 🙂 Thank you for the early morning chuckles.

    1. You’re welcome, Gwen. I just finished doing a few. I wish I had smaller thumbs.

  3. Poor Uncle Phil! This was hilarious, John! Happy Monday!👯‍♀️

    1. Thank you , Jill. Top get em today.

  4. This is why gift bags are a great invention.

    1. Up there with whipped bread. Thanks, Charles.

      1. Not familiar with whipped bread. Sounds interesting.

      2. Wonder bread came out with the advancement. No holes for the jelly to drip through.

      3. Odd name, but I like that change.

  5. Really funny, John, especially #10. The only thing worse is glitter. I hate glitter cards.

    1. Me too. You have to live with it all year. Thanks, Jennie.

      1. I do! Finding glitter residue in May is common. ☹️

  6. Hmmm, I’ve broke a few of these. None quite as often as the “measure twice cut twice” rule. Wrapping paper is like plywood. Cutting it a second time never makes it bigger.

    1. Ha ha ha. I like that statement, Dan. Thanks.

  7. One more thing. If you are the uncle who uses duct tape, you needn’t bother to write From:…. Everyone will know.

  8. Wonderful tips. I think I’ve committed some of these, plus I’ve used brown paper bags and staples.

    1. I like that. If you spend enough you can use a grocery bag. Thanks, Craig.

  9. A delightful list, John. I’m using gift bags now because my wrapping skills are less than stellar – and I’ll likely mess that up too!

    1. Mine are even less. I still try. Most of the time I get the, “Oh, what a unique package.” Code for “What a mess.”

      1. I knew we are brothers from different mothers!

  10. Tragically, I’m very much #6. You’d think I’d learn.

    1. Ha ha ha. Thanks, Teri.

  11. ‘Been there, done that!’ We do it all by phone with friends and loved ones… Age has its privilege! Also, from Necessity, with writing and social media, no energy for the effort… Plus, the kids and grandkids are all out of state – so, no standing in line at the P.O. to mail boxes… Just sayng! ♥ Happy Birthday, Jesus! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to everyone at RRBC &RWISA…or Happy Holidays of your choice! ♥

    1. I think you covered us all. Thanks, Billy Ray

  12. Lol! Sadly, I have made the #8 mistake. 🙂

    1. I think we all have, Jan. Thanks.

  13. Reblogged this on Jan Hawke INKorporated and commented:
    Simply hilarious! 😀

  14. LOL! I’ll do my best to avoid some serious mistakes, now thanks to you. 😀
    A Merry Christmas to you and yours, John. See you next year❣️🎄🤶❤️🌿❤️🎅

    1. Thank you, Dina. Merry Christmas to you and yours. Happy New Year.

  15. Great suggestions!! I especially hate those skinny, crinkly package padders some companies use, thinking they’re pretty and decorative. They look more like something that ran through the shredder!

    1. I agree. Who needs em.

  16. The best practices of gift wrapping! Thanks for the giggles, John. I’m sure I’ll have a few more laughs when I’m gift wrapping tomorrow. 🙂
    This list should be laminated and displayed in high traffic areas every Christmas. lol. Awesome tips and highly needed reminders. Cheers!

    1. Thank you, Natalie. I hope you have fun with your wrapping. 😀

  17. Another hysterical list of Do Nots – I particularly like # 6. So many packages I’ve wrapped with jury rigged pieces of paper. Hope you have fun wrapping yours this year.

    1. Thank you, Noelle. Let’s put it this way. I’m glad I have finished. 😀

  18. Ha, ha! I love it! This could not have come at a better time, since I did all my gift wrapping today! It was a mess but I too enjoy doing my own gift wrapping every year. Believe me, with some of these children’s gifts you have to get really creative.😅

    1. So true even if the wrap only lasts 3 seconds.

      1. That’s right! Ha, ha! 😀

  19. Reblogged this on Musings on Life & Experience and commented:
    John Howell’s 10 not-to-do when gift wrapping for Christmas suggestions.

    1. Thank you for the reblog, Suzanne.

  20. These are great, John, thanks for the Christmas smiles. And I confess to loving gift bags! 🙂

  21. My family used to burn the paper after the big opening. It got banned. We filled the trash can to overflowing and gifts got lost under the weight of the packaging. I started making reusable gift bags. Now we all use the bags and fight over who gets to take which home for the next year.

    1. That is a great idea, Alice. We always save the bags as well. We have some really ornate ones as well. Thanks for the visit and the contribution. 😀

  22. I have probably been guilty of all of these! Power was out here for the afternoon so I almost finished my wrapping. Considering checks next year! Cheers!

    1. What is with the power lately. I guess fixing it.

  23. A great post, John. I don’t even want to think about wrapping presents as I haven’t even started yet.

    1. Aw plenty of time, Robbie. You have until 5:00 am in the 25th. 😀

  24. #1 got me with Christmas just gone, John. I bought some rolls of paper that had glitter on it. I’m still covered in glitter, as are the dogs. Mind you, we sparkle great when outside and the sun is also out playing. People even put on sunglasses as they approach us.😀

    1. Ha ha ha. I can see you on a stroll looking like a circus parade. 😀 Thanks for sharing.

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