As families with young children, we are all developing our own holiday traditions which we hope to continue year after year. This is one of ours- homemade wrapping paper made by the kids. Because my children are young, the finished product admittedly looks quite rustic, but that is part of its charm. With the addition of some fancy ribbon, I think these gifts look really festive and most importantly, wrapped with love.
I had Cam on his own yesterday morning for the first time in ages, so I decided it was time for some footprint wrapping paper. He has really taken his time learning to walk, and has just started taking steps on his own, so I thought it would be particularly fitting for this holiday season.
Obviously this could have been frighteningly messy, so I ensured that I had everything set up before starting. I had a little chair, a towel, paper towels, a container of warm soapy water, washable paint, paintbrushes, a dish, a plastic sheet, craft paper and tin cans ready to go before we started.
To decorate the paper, I sat Cam on the chair and painted his feet before getting him to walk across it (holding his hand to make sure he stayed upright and on the paper!) He seemed to love it, coming back to the chair for more paint saying, “More, more, more!” I tried just dipping his feet in paint in a dish, but he wasn’t having any of it and actually seemed to like having his feet painted.
After we’d walked all over the paper in one colour, I washed and dried his feet using the container of soapy water and towel, then we did it all over again in couple other colours. I think it turned out pretty well, and even if it didn’t, the fun we had together was completely worth it.
When Poppy returned from ski school we continued the wrapping paper extravaganza but this time we printed the paper with stamps made from potatoes. I have so many memories of doing this when I was a kid and it is still one of the best ways to do stamp painting.
To make the stamps I cut a potato in half, then used a small, sharp knife to cut out a shape. We decided on stars and angels. I then used a towel to dry them so that the paint would stick well to the potato.
To decorate the paper, the kids applied the paint right to the potato, and stamped away. I joined in with Cam to help him stamp his paper but he was able to do it by himself quite well.
Poppy wanted to add sparkles so we sprinkled some on while the paint was still wet. I wouldn’t do this again! While it looks pretty, it does create a big mess because the sparkles fall off every time the paper moves once it is dry. I think next year we will wait until the paint has dried then apply glitter glue instead. Where there is a will for sparkle, there is a way!
So there you have it, homemade wrapping paper two ways! A festive, fun and practical craft, that warms my heart (and my children’s) every time we look at the gifts under the tree.