23 December 2013


I keep a few rolls of Kraft Paper between my house and the studio - whether I'm using it to package teepees for shipment or tearing off pieces to use as photo backdrops, I'm loathe to be WITHOUT. That said, it wasn't until this month that I fully realized its potential as holiday lifesaver, both for last minute entertaining and (the obvious) gift wrapping possibilities.

BECAUSE THE WRAPPING PAPER BIN AT TARGET IS WAY EMPTY. Aesthetically perfect and wildly simple, kraft paper is the first thing I reach for when gift-wrapping ANYTHING, but it's especially fun to use at this time of year because of the add-ons. Walk outside, trim whatever's appealing (the greenery in my neighborhood currently sports those gorgeous berries, but any waxy leaf or fir-tree cutting will work), and attach with a length of jute twine/yarn/string - it's max effect with minimal effort. If you want to take it a step further, A Pair And A Spare, Oh Happy Day, and Be Cool, Mom each have quick and easy ideas to make things feel a little more handmade.

BECAUSE YOU SPILLED RED WINE ON YOUR ONE NICE TABLECLOTH. In Panda Head Mag Issue 7, my friends Gert and Lori helmed tabletop decor for the Dinner At Buck's feature, unrolling brown kraft paper down the length of the 16' table. It was visually impactful and lent clean, rustic vibes; I could see the same effect with black kraft, with the added bonus of CHALK entering the picture (making your dinner scheme all the more PINTERESTING). It's also great to have around (and underneath) if you're decorating cookies/glitter-ing Holiday cards/otherwise making a mess.

BECAUSE YOU'RE HOLIDAZE BROKE, BUT YOU GOT SOMEHOW GOT ROPED INTO LAST MINUTE ENTERTAINING. Three dollar Whole Foods wine totally tastes like you spent twelve - but the label is a dead giveaway. With the bottle at room temp, use a few drops of hot glue to attach your kraft paper to the original label, wrap, then seal the edge with a few more drops. Tie tightly with ribbon or twine, chill your whites in the fridge per usual, and make a mental note to try to pawn this Christmas Eve-Eve business off on someone else next year.

WHERE TO SCORE. Need it NOW? Head to Home Depot; you can find a construction paper-weight version in the paint aisle (called Builder's Paper) for about $15. Also, if you've ordered anything online as of late, fragile items/electronics boxes are often padded with the stuff (I kid you not, I once pulled 42' from ONE shipment of mason jars. It was insane). And if you're looking to stock up for later (or want special colors/lengths/widths), Amazon is your first stop/last stop.

middle photo by John Ulaszek, for Panda Head Magazine: Issue 7


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