I keep gift wrapping easy the way I keep most things easy—by simplifying. Instead of having lots of different rolls of wrapping paper for every possible occasion, I mostly use either brown kraft paper or plain, white wrapping paper. (I do have a few sheets of decorative paper with geometric patterns that I couldn’t live without. I especially love the reversible paper I bought from Ikea on clearance years ago. These are also gender and occasion-neutral though, so I can use them year round.) Coupled with the right ribbon, these look chic for every occasion.
Because I don’t keep birthday paper, baby shower paper, wedding paper, Christmas paper, etc. my gift wrap requires a lot less space to store. (Am I the only woman who doesn’t aspire to have a gift wrapping room?) They also tend to be much cheaper than traditional gift wrap. (Compare price per square foot, not price per roll.) There is also less waste because I save the ends and odd bits of paper to wrap smaller packages. It’s easier to use up the small pieces when they can work for any occasion. (For instance, it would be nearly impossible for me ever to use up a small piece of wedding paper since wedding gifts tend to be large.)
To keep my gifts from looking too austere, I use decorative ribbons instead of stick-on bows. Ribbons add color, texture and pattern and have the distinct advantage over bows in that they can be infinitely reused. Neatly rolled up, they also take up much less space to store than bulky bows. I can store all of my ribbons, enough to wrap dozens and dozens of gifts, in a space about the size of three or four stick-on bows.
Though my gift wrapping might not be elaborate, its simplicity appeals to me. Spending less money, having less clutter, and producing less waste also appeal to me.