simple + festive gift packaging

I've become a bit obsessed about tag-making and gift-wrapping as of late, so now that holiday-time is here, I feel as though I am in my element!  One thing I love about Christmas anymore is that anything goes!  You don't have to be traditionally red and green; you don't have to shroud things in Santa Claus and bells; you don't even have to actually wrap your gifts in paper.  There are so many other (paperless) ways of presenting a gift, and that's what I'm focusing on today.

I've got some really simple go-tos for you, plus a quick fabric tape bow tutorial, too.  First up, the kraft papier mache box.  I like this for a few reasons:  They are sturdy and come ready to dress up in their lovely, rustic kraft color; they come in multiple sizes and are easily available at most large craft stores; they can be kept by the recipient and used for storage.

My first one could not be simpler!  With some jute twine, a miniature bottle brush tree, and 2 gorgeous labels from Open Book, the entire look came together in about 2 minutes. Thanks to the vibrant green vellum and the gold foil, it's festive and eye-catching.  

  The first thing I thought of when I saw this gold foil vellum border was a wreath.  And when I paired it with the deer frame, it became instantly Christmassy!  I made the bow from the gold dot fabric tape that came in the OB Embellishment Jar; I'll show you how to make them, too, in just a bit.

 Although Open Book isn't a Christmas collection by any means, it was easy to work the embellishments into my holiday crafting.  There was plenty of gold, and of course the green, and who can resist DEER during holiday time?  With a few basics from my stash (jute twine, sisal trees, red glitter ribbon), the festive possibilities became endless.

All the way back when I first received the Open Book collection, I knew I was saving this guy right here for Christmas!  It's also one of the things I would normally hang onto so tightly that it eventually goes out of style.  I don't know about you, but I'm sometimes afraid to use my most favorite pieces because I don't want to waste them!  That's why I put this on a muslin bag all by itself.  It's the focal point, it's a gift, and it's on packaging that can be used again and given to someone else to enjoy...

...if I decide to part with it.  It's one of those things you keep at your workspace so you can admire it--I'm sure you've made things like that, too.  I love the simplicity of this...the fabric tape tree made with triangle scraps from the aforementioned bows and the gold type sticker--wonder.  Isn't that one of the best words to describe the enchantment of the holiday season?

Another bow on a tiny kraft box, and it only took a minute to put together.  So let's make some more of these bows! 

All you need to make them yourself are fabric tape, scissors, and glue.
**Leave the paper backing on!**
Step 1:  Cut 3 lengths of tape
For my bows, my lengths were:  1 1/2", 3", 6"

Step 2:  Fold the ends of the longest tape piece to the middle.  Dab a bit of glue to each end to bind them and create 2 loops.

Step 3:  Snip the ends of your 3" piece to create V's and glue your looped length to it.

Step 4:  Wrap your shortest length around the center of your bow and glue each end to the bottom.  All done!  Super easy, right?!  (And now you can make some tiny triangle tree tags, too!)

Use them to embellish packages or even special holiday cards.

{If you swap out the "Merry Christmas" sentiment here with something romantic, this card would make a lovely Valentine!}

It's not too late to put Open Book to work and add some rustic glam to your holiday gifts!  I wish you the merriest of holidays, Crate Paper fans!