A Wrapper’s 3 Secret Ingredients

Designing is like cooking, if you have good ingredients, it will turn out delish, or beautiful.  When I started to concept my holiday wrapping (yes I actually design it like I would a trim collection) I mulled over my materials.  I must admit, I get more into the creativity of wrapping gifts than the actual buying of them, unless I am making them of course, anyone relating?  I started a tradition of gifting La Torinese Italian panettone several years ago to clients, family and friends –something I’d personally love to get– especially as an Italophile. (Avail at World Market) It’s a seasonal, shareable crowd pleaser, wonderful toasted with a cappuccino in the morning or buonissimo with a cup of tea in the afternoon. Did you know the recipe is 500 years old?  Check out its history here. This year, I chose a cake with fig and chocolate, an updated version of the classic dried fruit one. Since I began this tradition, I added embellishment to the panettone’s packaging with decorative paper, ribbons, trims and yarn as a Trim Queen signature.

Here I share my 3 favorite ingredients in the hope that they will inspire you to enjoy making your gifts eye-popping pressies before they’re even opened.

1. Fine Paper

Beautiful paper is a MUST.  As timing would have it this year, I met an artist at High Point Market that was marbleizing and fell in love with her work. Artist Jill Seale learned this technique in Florence and presented her work as art, art on fabric, pillows, and beautiful trays in Market Square. The trays I ordered arrived simultaneously with my panettone I’d gotten from World Market and I immediately called her to see if I could order paper for wrapping. I was absolutely floored when the papers were delivered, painted with a touch of gold throughout, ultra-rich paint colors luxuriously adding to the hand of the paper. It was all so exquisite so you can imagine I contemplated not cutting it at all, but my desire to share her work made me pick up the scissors.  Buy artful or unique paper, and if it’s expensive use a 6″ strip as a base to showcase embellishments.

2. Metallic Eyelash Yarn

I’m a sucker for antique metallic. I seriously cannot live a day without a touch of old gold. Whether it’s my jewelry, accenting my dishware or a metallic yarn in a trim design, metallic gives dimension and a little spunk to its bearer. I stumbled upon a metallic eyelash yarn for knitters and knew it was a perfect ingredient for my wrapping. It has a fringe-y look without being too messy. I added it to my Amazon page and cart, but you can find it at craft stores, and believe it or not, at Walmart too.  I love how it picks up the metallic paint in Jill’s paper!

3. Hug Snug Ribbon

This next ingredient I share is also a fave of  Martha Stewart.  Hug Snug is a binding tape used by seamstresses of yore on hems and seams. I started using it en masse from a garment district supplier as a component of fringe many years ago for a collection that kept our factory humming. It comes in 100 colors and although my supplier has long shut his doors, I found it on Amazon. It’s not expensive, about 10 cents per yard and it drapes beautifully. I mix colors to match the paper and add in some velvet or satin for texture. It’s a staple for Martha’s wrapping too and she even made a ribbon dispenser box to house multiple roles.  It’s on my “DIY to do” list for the new year.

My INGREDIENTS  come together! It’s a WRAP 2017!!!

Creative Holiday Gift Wrapping

Creative Holiday Gift Wrapping
The panettone has a 500 year history. Click to learn about it.

#TQHoliday – 10th year of Merry Making

I want to share this too…I started a hashtag this season, #TQHoliday because I wanted to track all the holiday crafting, decorating, gifts, parties, and wrapping we produce at the studio with our process #TrimAlchemy — turning something ordinary into extraordinary using trimmings. As I look back on the last few years since I started blogging and posting on Instagram, I get a serious kick from the creative ways we use trimmings, and how our taste and fabrications have evolved.

Creative Holiday Gift WrappingThis year marked the 10th anniversary of MERRY MAKING at the TRIM QUEEN studio — Holiday Crafting Party! Sarah and I gathered and organized materials for people to make several crafting options at the soiree — paper ogees, ribbon tree ornaments, Victorian ball ornaments, and pompoms galore.

As usual, my friends, artists and non-creatives both, BLEW ME AWAY with what they made.  Their open minds had them using materials freely that was in contrast to my often-controlling right-brain ways.  My heart was filled with JOY, WONDER and GRATITUDE to see the objet they gleefully created.  Check out videos of our maker night here >>

JOY-full makers at our 10th annual MERRY MAKING party creating one-of-a-kind ornaments and follies! Creativity and cocktails fueled our fabulous eve of #TrimAlchemy ! TY all for sharing your holiday spirit! @spetchell @dvdinteriordesign @tracyb914 @idarafox @dylan_ouderkirk @cathleenouderkirk @ptart57 @sharashisheboran @norris_rules @twinklevintagenyc @dwdesigndecor @interiorsbylisa #holidaydecor #decorating #holiday #holidayparty #makers #crafting #crafts #christmasornaments #mybhg #FringeFriends #TrimQueen

Posted by Trim Queen on Saturday, December 16, 2017

We also did a Facebook Live that is a hoot, to get a real sense of the eve, creativity with cocktails, click here >>

Merry Making at the Trim Queen Studio

Merry Making at the studio! Creativity beyond! ❤️❤️❤️

Posted by Trim Queen on Thursday, December 14, 2017

Last year’s highlights are just as amazing, I chronicled them as 5 Meaningful Lessons this Holiday Gifted, worth reading to help usremember that we need to recharge during this hectic time of year.  Are you worn out?  I am, but I hope you have some steam left to enjoy a wrapping session that can also be meditative — sharing the gift of your creativity with loved ones.

Happiest of holidays Fringe Friends and cheers to many more joyful making sessions of Trim Alchemy in 2018!