The Gifted Blog

April 14, 2010

Wrap Story: It Takes Two

This Wrap Story is part of a mini-series, documenting every present I’ve wrapped since the launch of The Gifted Blog. Click here for the whole series!

I doubt anyone noticed, but I hit a bit of a dry spell before our Japan trip. I ran out of gifts to wrap! After the big gift-giving season of Christmas, we didn't have any weddings or friends' birthdays to celebrate.

I sent out an S.O.S. to local friends: "Can I help you gift-wrap anything?" H., having a baby shower to attend (and also being a very understanding friend), invited me over after work to wrap a few presents.

The centerpiece of her gift was Strega Nona, Tomie dePaola's picture book about a pot of pasta gone amuck. This was a bit of a joke on the dad-to-be, who is infamous for making a style of noodles dubbed "John-sghetti". This bachelor concoction starts off with pasta boiled in milk. I'll say no more.

Being let in on the joke, I came prepared with a bag of noodles from Trader Joe's. After some discussion, I wrapped each book in paper while H. strung the noodles on pink raffia.

I used a mostly-hearts section of my beloved paminboots wrapping paper. The hearts, along with the pink raffia, added some girly touches (since the couple was expecting a girl). H. found a pleasing way to wrap the raffia around the gifts, and I was ready to call it a wrap!

H. played with a scrap of raffia as we continued chatting and catching up. She looked at the gift again. "I don't know," she ventured, "It looks a little flat. It looks like it could use some dimension."

I looked down, and H. had transformed the scrap of raffia into a rose! "Do you want to use that?" I asked. "Oh," she said, nonchalantly, "sure." (So modest.) H. added two leaves to the flower and attached it between two pieces of pasta.

Super cute. And much better than before, don't you think?

It was a fun experiment to wrap a present with a friend and blog reader. I wasn't sure what our level of interaction would be, but it turned out to be a collaboration. Even if it's just gift wrap, there's something exciting about seeing your ideas play off of someone else's, and vice versa. Here, the end result really benefited from that interplay.

Where have you seen your creative ventures benefit from collaboration?

4 comments:

  1. I should've asked for your help for gift-wrapping! I'm ashamed to say that for the last wedding and bridal shower I went to, I just handed the gifts to the Crate & Barrel or Bed Bath and Beyond clerks and asked them to wrap it for me. I did make my own gift tags, but left them at home accidentally. I kept shaking my head and saying... "What would Charissa think?" Hah!

    How do you usually wrap large presents?

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  2. Hi Jessica - If a store is offering gift wrapping, there's no shame in taking them up on it! Fewer and fewer stores do that nowdays.

    I am not that good with wrapping large gifts, actually. I've learned through trial and error to make sure your ribbon and bow are large enough.

    I didn't document it, but I was actually proud of how I 'wrapped' a Crate & Barrel box before I started blogging. It was one of those boxes with a handle (so hard to wrap!). I avoided wrapping it altogether. I made a collage on the side of the box w/ the couple's invitation and other papers, then wrapped the handle with coordinating ribbon and made a bow. It was fun!

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  3. I love the mushroom heart paper! such a find! I am going to start making my own paper...I will let you know how the process goes.

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