5 Ways to Gift Wrap Presents Not Shaped Like a Box

brown wrapping paper and gift supplies

Part of the fun when receiving a gift is guessing what you got. But when the gift giver exercises very little imagination, e.g. wrapping a bike so it is very obviously a bike, kind of takes the fun out of the process.

Don't be ungrateful. Simply thank your gift giver and make a commitment from then on to never, ever, ever be the type of gift giver who will deny the receiver of your gifts a little bit of fun. Here are some ways to disguise your gifts for the pure enjoyment of gift giving.

Disguise Small Awkward Shapes

A.K.A. put it in something else. Individual items such as those packed in plastic that hang in store displays make for awkward gift wrapping. If you have a box or a gift bag, you've won half the battle. Otherwise, find sometrhing else that can hold it like a cookie tin or a Pringles can (cleaned out of course.)

Wrapping cylindrical items isn't difficult, but it takes some finesse to make it look nice. Cut enough wrapping paper to go around the can, leaving about an inch of extra at the ends of the Pringles can, or three to fou inches (about half the diameter of the tin) on each end.

Tape the side to keep it from unravelling. Then starting with one of the free ends, fold it to the center of the can. Fold the next section, about an inch away from the first fold. Keep folding toward the center until you reach the end. The result should look like the spokes of a wheel.

Secure with tape, then do the same for the other side.

Another option is to wrap the gift in increasingly larger boxes to disguise its tiny size. While we don't encourage the art of deception, as long as no one gets hurt, it's on!

Or, if you're feeling especially mischievous (or lazy) don't bother with the wrapping. Simply present them with a gift of "Pringles" or "Cookies." For those of us sick of our diets, the promise of forbidden food might be just the right amount of disguising you need.

Too Big/Heavy to Wrap

bicycle wrapped in brown paper

There are bound to be times when the gift is too big or too heavy to wrap e.g. a workout set or a piece of furniture. In these cases, the added fun will be in the finding of the gift!

Try either a treasure hunt using clues that lead to the gift OR use some cotton line to lead your gift receiver around the house to the final gift destination. Be sure to include a few dead ends, just for the sake of your own amusement.

Wrap the Hints

Accessories to the real gift will likely be smaller and easier to wrap. Wrap the bike lock for a bike, a set of picks for a guitar, the remote control for a 65 inch tv. It'll be even more interesting if you wrap a random piece of the gift to make it a little more difficult to guess, like the battery from a robot lawnmower.

That way, when they finally guess what the gift is, it makes a simple bow on the actual gift seem justified.

Get Creative with Cardboard

folded cardboard with pointed shapes

If you're feeling especially sneaky, you can use cardboard to create a shape that is completely different from the gift itself. Give a new tablet to someone who thinks they're receiving a toilet. Or a gift card to someone in package shaped like a cat.

It'll take some time and some box cutting skills, so before you get started, check these safety tips when using a box blade. Then get to building so you can relish in their horrified/confused reactions.

Wrap Something You Already Have

In this case, we don't mind if you wrap the object in a way that it completely reveals what the object is. For instance, carefully wrap each section of one of your dining room chairs just so you can disguise the real gift that you're giving.

Perhaps set it on the underside of the chair, or if it's flat enough, on the seat itself so they can find it more quickly. Finding the gift quickly may be especially important if you've got a recipient who is inclined to have a tantrum at the idea of receiving a chair for a gift.

Or maybe you want to avoid this kind of gift wrapping for those of small stature and few years--at least until they can handle this kind of grown-up silliness.

With the gift giving season just around the corner, try some of these solutions to disguise your unconventional gifts and add humor and fun to the holidays.