Monday, December 18, 2017

Printable Downloads for Gifts and Gift Wrap from Minnesota Makers

By Sharon Parker
Sharon's Compendium

What I really need during the final week before Christmas is more running around to stores for supplies and gifts I forgot to get earlier, said no one ever.

And isn't now the moment you realize that no, you did not stock up on wrapping supplies in last year's after-Christmas sales after all.

Fortunately, you do have an alternative that allows you to stay home and enjoy your holiday preparations instead of running yourself ragged. Through a combination of upcycling and printable downloads, we've got you covered!

Punch two holes in a plain paper bag, such as this flat merchandise bag or a paper lunch bag, then  thread some ribbon through the holes and tie a bow. Add a printable tag and you're all set! All out of ribbon? See below for a DIY ribbon hack.

Many Etsy sellers offer items you can download and print at home right now, no mailing time or shipping cost involved, including printable gift tags and other package embellishments. There are even quick and easy DIY gifts you can make with a little help from Minnesota Etsians. Click on the captions below the items to see them on Etsy.

I'm going to show you these in two categories: gift wrap and decor, and then gifts.


You may also find that you have some materials on hand already that will help you wrap festive packages without another trip to the store. Like this: 

The "ribbons" on this brown bag are strips of cloth cut from a remnant and an old shirt in my fabric stash. And the bag is actually upcycled from a store where I shopped — it has the store logo on the other side.

The tags in the above examples are instant downloads from Lisa Seng Studio. She has many more downloadable items, so be sure to  check out her shop for more designs.
Holiday trees printable gift tags from Lisa Seng Studio, $3.95
Or, for a different, more elegant look, consider these  tags from Cratefully, which also offers printable recipe cards, for sharing your favorite recipes as a practical personal gift.

Snow confetti gift tags from Cratefully, $2.50
These clipart Christmas trees and ornaments from Lily Bimble can be used digitally to embellish photos or place cards; and I'm thinking you could also print them and then cut them out to decorate packages and bags. 

Modern Christmas tree clipart from Lilly Bimble, $1

Could your walls use a little dressing up for the holidays? You wouldn't have to put these beautiful Christmas posters into frames if you're avoiding trips to the store, they'll look lovely just as they are. And don't worry that your printer isn't large enough; even though the ones pictured are 16 x 20 inches, they also come in 8 x 10, which should print very nicely on letter size white card stock or paper. From Twinkle Me Designs.

Printable Christmas wall art in two sizes, from Twinkle Me Designs, $11
Finally, here's a set of four ornaments and matching bookmarks from Jinjer S to decorate your tree or table. The ones shown were printed on colorful scrapbooking paper, but if you don't have any such paper on hand, consider scribble-coloring sheets of plain paper, either before or after printing them. It could be a fun project to involve children in, to embellish them with crayons or markers before assembling. 

I could see these bookmarks used as tags, too, by punching a hole in one end and writing on the back.   Jinjer also has some yoga-themed ornaments and a yoga book, so be sure to check out her shop to see them.

Paper holiday ornaments from Jinjer S, $4.50
In fact, the shops featured above also have printable items for gifts or yourself (like organizer pages), so be sure to look over the other items in their shops, either for your holiday needs, or to bookmark them and visit again after the holidays.


If you like to do cross stitch and have a few supplies on hand, you might find these mini snowflake patterns from Hopstitch Design to be just the thing to make use of your pieces and remnants for a lovely gift or to decorate your own tree. If you don't have the mini hoops to display them with, perhaps you could make them into tiny pillows with a loop on one corner. (If you don't have stuffing material on hand, here's a tip from my grandmother: use old nylon stockings.)
Snowflake cross stitch patterns from Hopstitch Designs, $2
Is that a little too ambitious for you? Yeah, me too. Here's an easy print-cut-fold item for your health-conscious friends and relatives, and you could enclose it with a card for a stocking stuffer or mailable gift. It's a handy little wallet-size reference for the grocery store so you know which fruits and vegetables are grown with the least amount of pesticides, and which ones you may want to only buy organic, from All Things Jane. This shop also has some printable wall art with Bible quotations and two with watercolors of fruits and vegetables. 
Printable reference cards for the grocery store, from All Things Jane, $2.99

Kids like to make stuff for themselves and others, too, and the paper crowns from Put a Crown On It are perfect for them to help make for their friends and cousins, and might even channel some of their holiday excitement into a calming coloring project. This unicorn is just one example, be sure to visit the shop to see the others. 

These "build a house" printables from Morning Star Arts can be adapted for use with a flannel board or magnets, but even if you don't have supplies for those on hand, just printing these on cardstock and cutting out the shapes can foster some creative playtime as kids use them to design houses and invent stories about the people who might live in them.

Let's face it, small children are often as interested in the boxes as the items that came in them. Why fight it when you can print out dozens of elements designed by Color and Kindness for them to color and attach to boxes of various sizes to make neighborhoods. Most of the components can be printed on letter-size paper, and the shop assures that their tips for printing the "paper playscapes" on extra large paper. (Or you could roll out some brown kraft paper and let kids draw their own roads and features, if you don't have the time or inclination to get those printed.) This shop has a lot of printable items for kids and adults, with Bible references and a general kindness theme.

As a final note, I'll just mention that my shop also has a few printable items for holiday packages and gifts, if you care to check it out here.

The bloggers of HandmadeMN will be taking a short break here on the blog and be back again in the new year.

Happy holidays to all!