How Much Wrapping Paper Do You Need?

How Much Wrapping Paper Do You Need?

Posted by Michael Stone on

Before I became a gift-wrapping pro, I can’t count the number of times I cut my wrapping paper only to find that the sheet was now too short and didn’t cover the gift properly! If this sounds familiar then don’t worry - I'm imparting my expert knowledge so that you can become a gift-wrapping wizard too.

If you’ve ever wondered, how much wrapping paper do you need, or miss-cut your paper which has left you needing more sheets, read on! I have created a simple guide below to figure out how much wrapping paper you need for any gift-wrapping situation!

How to Measure Wrapping Paper?

To determine how much wrapping paper do I need, I use a simple rolling technique and it works effectively regardless of the gift shape or size:

  1. Lay your sheet or roll of wrapping paper flat and place your gift on top, on one side
  2. Roll the gift three times along the paper so the distance of the other 3 sides is measured
  3. Add an extra 3-4 inches at the end and cut

I always wrap gifts on a large flat surface like my dining room table and the first step is to lay the sheet or roll out (you may need to weigh it down at one end to keep it flat).

Plonk your gift at the end of the paper on its longest side and this gives you your first side measurement.

It’s then just a simple process of rolling/turning the gift three times onto the other three sides along the length of the wrapping paper. By doing this, you are marking out the square area of wrapping paper needed for all four sides of the gift!

Always add a few extra inches after this though so that you get a nice overlap! This method works best for square and rectangular gifts.

For circular objects like bottles, the same rolling principle applies but you need to place the object flat on the paper and make a mark with a pen or pencil at the far side of the object. Then, roll the gift once until the near side is on that mark. Repeat this marking/rolling process three more times and this should give you the overall surface area of the four “sides” of the circular gift.

4 Top Tips to Get the Right Wrapping Paper Size

The above solution works for any occasion and paper type including baby shower wrapping paper and Christmas wrapping paper but there are some simple tips to remember too that can ensure you get the right size and never waste your paper.

1. Allow for overlap!

I can’t stress the importance of overlapping enough! You don’t want the two edges of your wrapping paper to join perfectly together as this looks cheap and it doesn’t give you enough wiggle room for gifts with no stretchiness.

3-4 inches of overlap is essential so that you get a nice strong join but also to give you leeway if you have miss-measured slightly.

2. Consider the wrapping paper material

Different wrapping paper has different properties including stretch, durability, and folding. Make sure you assess the quality and toughness of the wrapping paper before you start measuring and cutting.

For example, our premium wrapping paper is tougher and shouldn’t tare so you can be more precise with the measurements. In contrast, cheaper wrapping paper can often tear when folded or stretched too much so you may need to allow for extra material so the paper isn’t as tight.

3. Think about the gift shape and consistency

The shape of the gift and its consistency can affect how much wrapping paper you need too.

For example, gift boxes are some of the easiest things to wrap as they have clearly defined edges and are solid. The wrapping paper won't move or stretch so you can get the correct amount far easier than something softer like a t-shirt or a dress.

4. More is always better!

If in doubt, I always overestimate the amount of wrapping paper needed. You can’t magically add more wrapping paper if you cut a sheet too short! However, you can trim a sheet of wrapping paper down or create a larger overlap if it is too big. Obviously getting the exact size is preferable to make better use of your paper, but overestimating helps reduce waste.

Be a Gift Wrapping Pro and Get the Size Right!

Forget about cutting your wrapping paper only to find that you have a huge gap in the middle of your present! You should now have a clear answer to the question, how much wrapping paper do you need for any occasion and gift? By using the simple rolling method and the above tips, you should never waste wrapping paper again!

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