Traditional Town & Country Inspired Christmas Wrapping Ideas.

There aren’t a lot of years I just buy wrapping paper and ribbon at the store and call it a day with my presents, but this year that’s exactly what I did. I’m such a loser slouch.

Classicly wrapped Christmas presents in an eclectic room decorated for the holidays.

I should loser slouch my way through the rest of my life because I happen to love this year’s presents.  Loser slouch is the only way to go!  From here on in I’m going to loser slouch every aspect of my life. The next time you hear from me I’ll have a tv dinner in my stomach and velcro closure shoes on my feet.


I wanted to have traditional colours but not super-bright versions of them.  Gold, green and red. I really wanted a sort of golden moss green, 2″ wide satin ribbon with intermittent flecks of copper in it and no wire, but that’s surprisingly hard to find.

So I went with Moss green, a dark almost burgundy (which until today I thought was spelled burgandy) red and gold.

Christmas present wrapped in sparkly gold paper and a green satin ribbon.

I really, really didn’t want wired ribbon. I just wanted plain satin ribbon that falls and shines nicely, which is what I got for the green ribbons.

With unwired, satin ribbon you get nice flop so things don’t look overly fussy or perfect.

(p.s. Please ignore my bad, grainy photos.  I got a new camera!  And I’m just figuring it out. Actually I haven’t figured it out at all, lol, but I didn’t have time to redo some of my less than perfect photos. It’s a great camera, I swear. These were my first shots with it before knowing where all of the adjustment dials were, lol.  Sometimes you just have to dive in knowing you’re going to make mistakes.)

I don’t care anyway now that I’m a loser slouch.

Christmas presents wrapped in gold paper and green and red plaid paper with velvet and satin ribbons.

I also moved my presents out from under the tree this year because they end up covered in pine needles and it makes watering the tree harder than it already is.  A couple of vintage suitcases makes a better backdrop for them anyway if you ask me.

For the red ribbon I did go with a wired ribbon because I wanted velvet but I still wanted to be able to form it to look a bit sloppy. You can’t do that with regular velvet ribbon.

All the bows are plain, no double or triple bows and some presents don’t even have bows at all. Just a knot tied at the top of the present.

Presents wrapped for Christmas stacked on antique leather and wood suitcases.

I got bored with just the plain suitcases and presents so I added some garland.  Then I added lights to the garland.  Then I added massive pinecones to the lights and the garland.

By the way I used the C cell battery operated copper wire lights I got a few years ago and they’re still going strong and I STILL love them.  If you want or need wire lights these are the ones to get. They have plenty of wire and lights, the wire is copper not silver,  but best of all is the C cell battery pack.  NOT double A batteries, which means they last way longer before the batteries need to be changed. Plus they have a self timer and go off automatically after 4 hours. Honestly, they’re one of my favourite things ever.

Christmas gift wrapped in plaid paper with a slouchy red velvet ribbon.

If you think yeah those are nice, but where’s the WOW?  You can take a look at these, these and these wrapping ideas from years past.

You know, from before I was a loser slouch.

How did you wrap this year?


  1. Jacquie Gariano says:

    Love the packages and ribbons. It all looks so festive and bright. I wrap and be-ribbon everything. I learned everything from my Mom. She used to go to Black Friday sales and buy paper, ribbon, cards, orniaments, etc. etc. When she died I got boxes & boxes of stuff. I didn’t have to buy anything for years..LOL. I love to make the packages as festive as possible, but mine are a real slouch next to yours. You are so creative, you inspire me all the time. I just love reading your blog. I have tried in the past to recycle the wrapping paper but kids (and adults) just tear into the packages in their rush to get to the gift.
    I can’t wait to see how 2019 goes for you and what you come up with to delight us.

  2. Hannah says:

    DANG that is some beautiful satin ribbon, I am very heart-eyes over it. Loving this year’s wrapping aesthetic.

  3. Marna says:

    Loving the paper and ribbons, just lovely! :)

  4. Ramona says:

    Ha! I used that exact same plaid paper as you! I think I got it at the end of the season last Dec at Homegoods. Has a nice heft to it. Happy Holidays!

  5. chris says:

    Oh, I love them – I am a sucker for plaid at Christmas! Beautiful – if you are a loser slouch, I guess I am a double-triple-loser-slouch-XL! Although I do love wrapping, I tend to use brown/white paper bags and lots of festive greenery and pretty ribbons. Happy Christmas.

  6. Benjamin says:

    I’m going for a slug from the Jameson bottle on the sideboard first… Your packages are lovely, my dear. Is that a box of rainbow unicorn with the big red bow? You saw my wish list… I love you !!

  7. Deborah says:

    You can take needle nose pliers and pull the wire out. Just cut to length to make it easier. Also you can pull the wire halfway and make it ruffle. Just saying.⛄️

  8. Hi Karen, love everything (well, almost everything, because sometimes you are just silly) you do, and this is no exception. It’s not an over-the-top Christmas at your house, and I am doing my little bit to convince the over achievers, and all the stress that goes with, is NOT necessary, and that LESS can be more. Less stress, more enjoyment, and less stuff, less clean up end of it all, and worry about finding MORE storage, when we already have more stuff IN storage than we need (of course, yes, I am talking about myself, mostly).
    In any event, maybe next year, we see you pull off the magic of 100% completely recyclable wrapping materials (like you’re brown paper, and reusable satin ribbons). In any case, just want to say have a very Happy Christmas my funny, delightful blogger (mine, of course, but only because you are the ONLY blog I follow), and all the best, full of new ideas to share, in the coming year. Kind regards Karen, as always.
    Charlotte T.

  9. Vikki says:

    The ribbons absolutely make these gifts special!! Where did you find such beautiful ribbon?

  10. judy says:

    My Christmas wish for you Karen and all of your wonderful readers is contentment,if life is not happy at this moment may all of your tomorrows make up in joy for all past sorrows.
    Thanks for all of the wonderful instruction and laughs you serve up in abundance- Karen, at 78 I ignore the labor part and rejoice in the jaw dropping final result-your yard still astonishes!

  11. I have now determined I need go no further than your blog for all my worldly needs, particularly Christmas. Having reviewed relevant previou posts as well, next year’s wrapping, stocking stuffing, baking and decorating requirements are covered. Please don’t move away.

    And thank you additionally by making the links to vs We Canadians are sensitive about such things.

    See you at the Christie sale… May is my favourite one!

  12. Shaelee says:

    I bought a 4 pack of coordinated paper from Walmart 😂
    Taking the easy way out you could say, but I’ve got a 3yr old and 7month old so they keep me too busy to be as creative as I’d like lol

  13. Deborah says:

    Karen, I make bows for my husband’s wreaths he makes this time of year. I always get the wire ribbon. When I switch to wrapping presents for the grandkids I cut the ribbon to length and take a needle nose plier and pull the wire out so they don’t get poked. It works fine.
    Your blog makes my day. Thanks so much for sharing.

  14. Brenda says:

    I’ve had a bad habit of buying paper and ribbon after Christmas when it’s on sale. Been doing this for years and I have massive amounts of both. So this year it’s all about trying to use up what I can (and NOT buying any more!).
    That said, I will probably try to salvage all the ribbon, bags and boxes I can from everyone when we unwrap. I dislike seeing all of it go into the trash and a majority of it can be used again.
    My grandma would save every scrap of wrapping paper from unwrapping each year, she’d use it until it it was just large enough to wrap a jewelry box (she was an AVON lady). It became fun to see the wrapping paper from 10 years earlier back in circulation!

    • Nicole says:

      My grandma did the same!

      I planned to wrap from the paper I bought last year at the dollar store (it looked like kraft paper with green and red Christmas images on it), but apparently I left my stock up at my sister’s house in Ontario (where we did Xmas last year). I wrapped a few gifts in Ikea red-and-white striped paper but I found it wasn’t very durable, so I went back to the Dollar Store on Friday and got a few rolls so I could finish the lot.

      Again: thank goodness for the Pledge or I’d be nowhere near this calm!

  15. Sarah says:

    Love you loser attitude. I’m such a detailed oriented perfectionist that makes me crazy. I’m trying to teach myself to have some loser slouch in my life, with help from my kids. The only presents currently under our Christmas tree are the ones that my children purchased at their school Santa shop. They are beautifully wraped in glittery bags plastic bags, duct taped shut, and no tags, just names written in sharpie. I can send you a picture if you need some ideas for next Christmas.

  16. Hilary says:

    I had every good intention to do pretty wrapping with custom name tags like I did last year. Instead I stuffed the gifts in mismatched bags and said, “f*beep* it, dogs are red/green colourblind, they won’t know the difference.”

  17. Bonnie Gutierrez says:

    Aww, come on Karen, “what DID I wrap with”? Surely you jest because I am the last minute person. The good news is that I actually have a plan for some nice paper and satin ribbon. Actually, my packages will look similar to yours.
    Wishing you a Merry Christmas!

  18. Shelagh says:

    Most of the stores where I shop package their goods in brown paper bags…I collect all year long and then decorate the bags in a variety of ways…this year I will adorn the gift tags with a pine cone an orange slice( yes I finally had success) and a bit of twine. I save all kinds of ribbon…tablecloths, blankets, even sheets often come tied with ribbon.
    I save old Christmas cards and as long as there isn’t a letter written on the inside of the cover I cut those up for gift tags. I cheated somewhat ( I did use a 50% off coupon at Michael’s) and I bought a paper cutter shaped like a tag and it really sped up the process.
    When the kids were smaller we would stay up after they went to bed wrapping sometimes until 2 or 3 in the morning 😩 Now I wrap it as soon as it comes in the house!
    Have you noticed how often “green” is also “cheap”? When we lived in the city my husband used to cut the grass with an old push mower that we picked up at a garage sale for $10… long before it was cool to be Eco friendly.
    Before I start to sound like I’m bragging about how green I am I better shut up as I have also contributed more than my fair share to greenhouse gases by driving all over the place for competitive sports both winter and summer for 2 out of 4 kids.
    Merry Christmas to you Karen and all the other Readers of this outstanding blog! And before anyone jumps on me for being politically incorrect….what I hope you will take from my wish is that you will find, while celebrating your event, the same peace, joy, and fellowship that I experience during Christmas with my loved ones.

  19. lisaMC says:

    Camera asides made me laugh out loud! I got a fancy schmancy Nikon (with a telephoto lens!) three, yes, 3 years ago and have yet to figure it out enough to make my pictures look better than my phone’s pics. That’s probably because I have to sit and read instructions that my brain says should be ALREADY IN MY BRAIN after all my years taking pictures.
    Resolution for 2019–I will learn to use my new (ish) Nikon so that when there is a huge bald eagle at the top of a pine tree in the field trying to pretend he isn’t going to grab one of my chickens, I will be able to take a good photo to show everyone who doesn’t believe that a huge bald eagle was casing my yard.
    better idea–Maybe you could ask Idris to make a video tutorial so I would be more inclined to stick with it…….
    ps–the gifts look gorgeous–especially sitting on that beautiful floor. (That I originally voted not to do but now that I see it can admit that I’m a lazy and sometimes negative fool.)
    Merry Christmas-hope you find the almond ; )

  20. Teri on the Left Coast says:

    Your presents look beautiful. I admire your style. And panache. And spelling skills. I especially admire and appreciate your hard work all year that makes so many of us snicker, chortle, guffaw and laugh out loud.
    I also appreciate the eclectic group of followers who pile on your posts adding to the hilarity. You gathered us, so you get the credit.
    Merry Christmas to you Karen and to Betty, Pink Tool Belt, Fish Pedicure and all your readers who celebrate it. May it be merry and bright.

  21. Marilyn Meagher says:

    Wow. Your presents are always too lovely to open. I’m lucky mine get paper even on them.i devote a lot of time to choosing gifts..I always want to get them just right and ultimately leave the wrapping til the last minute and end up just throwing some paper on them. I never resort to bags though for my kids as I always feel like it’s a rip off. A gift really feels like a gift when you have to rip off the tape and rip the paper.

  22. Linda says:

    Karen, I have to tell you – I can’t wait to get your posts! I actually go refresh my coffee, turn off the phone and read and laugh and chuckle and pretend I am right there with you! To be even more honest, I like this year’s gift wrapping the best. I love your style, your humor and let us not forget the haircut! This year I used brown paper from the Dollar store and ribbon I had in my stash! I used all different colors, mostly re, green, gold and silver, whatever I had. I am quite pleased with the results given what I worked with! So, here’s to all us creative, free thinking girls! I LOVE being a loser slouch!

  23. Eileen says:

    The Sunday comic pages and brown paper grocery bags with ribbon recycled from gifts received from people willing to spend on such frivolity, or if there’s none then garden twine. After reading some stats about the amount of trash caused by, and what gets spent on stuff that gets ripped off and chucked I had to stop.
    Yeah, me bah-humbugging on my soapbox (recyclable!).

    • Stephanie says:

      I’ve done both newspapers (comic section) and brown craft paper or paper bags. Tied up with twine and natural elements like pine trimmings or cones. They look lovely and can be recycled. We recycle gift paper here so I do use it. I’m not a big ribbon fan. . . but do use it. I keep the scraps and reuse it for many different things. Sometimes natural is just best, prettier, and environmentally friendly!

  24. Lise Cameron says:

    Karen …Your gifts are amazing…..Your new floor really stands out….Could you please tell me where you bought your floor grate or did it come with your home….Look forward to your posts and they make for interesting reading…Merry Christmas…

    • Karen says:

      That floor grate is something I found at a garage sale years ago. They gave it to me. I never knew what I was going to do with it, but when I redid my floors I had to replace my grate, so I decided to cut the hole a bit larger than it was and use this one. The only caveat is it’s wood and very old so you can’t actually stand on it or it will crack. ~ karen!

  25. Ella says:

    I do my wrapping on Christmas Eve while sipping wine, eating shrimp cocktail and watching It’s a Wonderful life. Where did you get that gorgeous red ribbon? My theme is silver and gold this year and I am still desperately searching for gold velvet 2” ribbon…. and waiting for my invitation to the bagel baking party…. ;)

    • Karen says:

      LOL. I haven’t heard from her again so I’m afraid bagel making might be cancelled. Although I might try it myself. The ribbon is from Michaels and is much darker/dirtier looking than in the photos for some reason. The true colour doesn’t pick up. ~ karen!

  26. Tracey in GA says:

    Looks beautiful. I like the suitcase idea. My wire ribbon was great, until it stabbed me in the finger and blood squirted on my decorative reindeer. I’m sold on the wireless type of everything now. Your photos are good. The fact you can remember to take a picture, upload to your blog, and successfully share it with us is a huge accomplishment that some of us (maybe just me) could not do. Your house looks so clean! I’m envious. I have packing peanuts, Amazon boxes, old dog toys, and bags of cheap bows surrounding my tree at the moment. Maybe I could hide all that in a steam trunk display?

    • Karen says:

      Everything that I put away to make room for my Christmas stuff is in the suitcases! And my house WAS a disaster. A complete dirty, disaster. I spent over 12 hours cleaning this weekend. Longgggg overdue. ~ karen!

  27. Teddee Grace says:

    The source for the ribbon? It’s beautiful.

  28. Mary W says:

    Your slouch looks great! Love the old fashioned feeling and especially the guts to take them out from under the tree. That present place is for the squirrels! But the suitcases and staging look so nice. Seems like you have inspired a new way to decorate with presents and I am going to love doing this.

  29. I don’t invest too much time or money on wrapping, after all you want to get to what’s inside and the best way to do that is by ripping that wrapping off. I’m a ripper and I think everyone else should be too. Drives me crazy when they pick at the tape to neatly unwrap. I sometimes don’t even wrap neatly for that reason, to give them something to grab and RIP!!!!

    • Karen says:

      I think of wrapping like plating food. You eat ( unwrap ) with your eyes. It’s a good way to trick someone into feeling like the present inside is possibly more special than it actually is. ;) ~ karen!

  30. I am coveting those giant pine cones. Rarely do I get to add coveting to my usual sins of gluttony and sloth, so, Thanks for that, Karen!

  31. Diane says:

    Usually I choose my wrapping paper and ribbon to coordinate…three papers and simple satin or wired ribbon. This year it’s tartan with mostly black and white. Love the simplicity of just a couple of papers and ribbon choice. Of course once you start getting mailed gifts it gets a little more unorganized, but for one shining moment it looks stunning.

  32. Lynn says:

    That is absolutely lovely!

    I try to do the eco-friendly, reusable thing every year, but, yeah, slouch (and life!) take over.

    A bunch of years ago I was fascinated by a book I saw on furoshiki, a style of wrapping with fabric squares. The idea is that the beautiful gift wrap gets passed around with all the people you gift, kinda like a never-ending gift. No waste, right?

    But, the only person who usually enjoys it is my sewing friend, and all of her quilting relatives. And every year I say I’m going to spend fifteen minutes a day to work on cutting and hemming my stock of Christmas fabric, and, slouch.

    Looking at your lovely packages makes me want to buy paper and ribbon and have fun! (At least until I get done slouching with my fabric.). The papers you chose also remind me of this fabric upstairs that…

    I’m a brand new reader to this post and I think I’m going to really enjoy it. Thank you!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Lynn! I’ve done the Japanese fabric wrapping and I wasn’t especially great at it. All of my presents looked like they were wearing diapers. ~ karen!

  33. Elissa Rioux says:

    Merry Christmas Karen! Thank you for the gift you give us all year long!💕

  34. Heather says:

    Very pretty! Makes me want to unwrap all my rather dull efforts and start over again. Maybe I can make mine look better under the tree if I string tiny lights and cedar boughs through them. Thanks for the idea! Thanks for all your great ideas! And merry Christmas, Karen. Your site makes paying Rogers less painful every month. xo

  35. J Riley says:

    Love this! Where did you find the tartan/checked wrapping paper? Thanks.

  36. Paula says:

    I love that subtle look, so pretty. Where did you end up finding the ribbon without wire?

  37. Kimberly says:

    I remember when wired ribbon became “a thing”. And I was so so excited about it. Well. You have just sold me on regular ribbon for next year! So clever and trendy and convincing of you!

    Every year I get some sort of lovely vintage

  38. Jennifer says:

    This is the year! The year I finally use up all the scraps of beloved wrapping paper from Christmas past. Yes, my wrapping style this year is whatever is left on all the rolls. I call it, Christmas Hodgepodge.

  39. charissa says:

    Lights ordered, present wrapping ogled, and chuckles stifled (burgandy! lol. I spelled atta(t)chment wrong until I was in my mid 30s:)) I had to say thank you for a year of hysterical and inspiring posts that really helped me while battling hard times and some depression this year. You never fail to make me giggle and sometimes, laugh so hard that tea comes out my nose. Just wanted to say as my Christmas present to you, that you are appreciated and what you do matters more than just doing stuff, but the doing stuff matters too.. Merry Christmas and thank you to a kindred spirit. (Yes, that is an Anne of Green Gables reference)

  40. Cathy Reeves says:

    I so adore your vintage suitcases that I’m thing it might be worth a trip to Canada to talk you out of them. I’ll bring lots of bacon, and pizza with me to distract you and once gone you’ll never catch me cause you’re such a slouch.
    And the slouchy green ribbon is perfect too. But I won’t steal your presents, that would ruin your Holiday after all. Maybe your camera…what are the deets on that? I could stand to replace mine. Maybe a quick swap out while I’m there…
    Hmm.. this caper is getting better and better!

    • Cathy Reeves
      Willing be your get away driver. Also to thro in alcohol to go w/your bacon&pizza. Have experience in high speed pursuits-no police record on any continent (hmm, intrigue)
      Must be willing to share in the suitcase bounty!
      I also strongly 2nd Charissa’s comments. Found you by coincidence this summer researching a chicken project. You had me hooked. Your hysterical & I greatly appreciate/look forward to your emails. They can make my day! After 3 yrs in a row of back surgeries, leave me fighting to return to my beloved job as a vet tech along with missing the physical aspects I love so much. Like harvesting my Kennebec potatoes (being from Kennebec county-lol!) My animals keep me going, made part of my daily physical therapy, yet on real bad days days, I know I’ve always got you! :) even my deadpan, nonanimal, nondecor, non-much of anything, hubbie enjoys our early morning read together. Thank you! Your hard work is very much appreciated! Merry X-Mas & very Happy New Year!

    • billy sharpstick says:

      Yes, Enquiring geeks want to know. What is your new camera?

  41. Christina Contri says:

    That red bow is beautifully droopy!! How do you get it looking so perfect?

    My wrapping is the same as it’s been for the past several (more than I want to count) years. I have seven or so black & white patterned papers that we tie with red or green ribbons and over-the-top gift tags. I love the b&w theme because it perfectly matches the tree, which only has penguin ornaments on it.

    • Karen says:

      Your tree only has penguin ornaments on it and you chose to discuss your wrapping???!!! LOL! ~ karen!

      • judy says:

        I can’t get over the documentary “March of the Penguins”. The unbelievable hardship they endure to lay their eggs and the daddy penguins hold the egg on their flippers and keep it “warm”. The mommys go off to fish while the men go without food for months! Amazing!

        • Karen says:

          That was a great documentary! It was so sad, lol! Who would ever think a penguin documentary could be so heart wrenching! ~ karen

  42. jo foster says:

    I think that your presents look absolutly Beautiful! I adore the drape of the ribbon. Think I am going to try your simplistic approach…. also amòrderi g the lights. Just what I was looking for. Thank You.

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