Gluten Free Lavender Shortbread gift wrapped to perfection

In a recent post I wrote about the uses of Lavender so I thought this post would be dedicated to ‘Gluten Free Lavender shortbread gift wrapped to perfection’
Not only do you get yummy biscuits but they are wrapped beautifully too!

How deliciously, considerately wonderful is to give a gift that is lovingly homemade, perfectly presented and temptingly, aromatically scented?  These recipes for Gluten Free Lavender Shortbread, and Lavender with Lemon Shortbread will provide a delightful house-warming, coffee morning, birthday, Mother’s day, thank you or any-time treat gift wrapped to perfection for someone special.

 

Lavebder ribbons

Purple Stitched and Fern Stripe Ribbons by Jane Means

 

Dietary Requirements.  With so many nutritional needs to consider, if you are in any doubt, the gluten free, vegan option is another way to show your consideration and ensure that your lavender scented, crumbly, melt in the mouth gift will be most gratefully received.

 

Not a confident baker?  Worry not, these delights are incredibly quick and easy to make and you will be so proud and inspired by your own talents when you present the finished package.

lavendershortbread-1-8

Image courtesy of The Contented Baker

 

Ingredients for Gluten Free, Vegan, Lavender with Lemon Shortbread

175g non dairy butter, at room temperature, OR coconut oil

110g caster sugar OR (to exclude refined sugar) use 170g maple syrup

280g gluten free flour blend

½ tsp pure vanilla extract

¼ tsp pure lemon extract

dash of salt

zest of 1 lemon

1 tbsp of dried lavender flowers

shortbread mix

 

Method.  Whip the butter together with the lavender flowers to release the maximum flavour from the flowers.  Beat in the sugar.  Mix in the sweetener, vanilla and lemon extracts, lemon zest and salt.  Stir in the flour.  Bring together and knead with your hands ‘for a long time’ until smooth. The dough should neither be too sticky, nor too dry.  Roll out the dough to a thickness of approx. half an inch thick and use a cutter shape of your choice.  Heart shaped cookies can be especially nice for a gift.  Place the cookies on a baking sheet in the oven at Gas 4/160C (fan) for about 15 minutes.  Do not overcook as they will harden as they cool.

 

Ingredients for Lavender Shortbread

175g softened, unsalted butter

100g caster sugar

225g plain flour

25g demerara sugar

2 tbsp fresh, finely chopped lavender flowers

 

Method Whip the butter together with the lavender flowers to release the maximum flavor from the flowers.  Beat in the sugar.  Stir in the flour.  Bring together and knead with your hands until smooth.  Divide mixture in half, make two cookie mix sausages and roll each in the demerara sugar before wrapping in clingfilm or foil for 30 minutes.  Slice each unwrapped sausage of firmed mixture into about 10 cookies, place on lightly greased baking tray and bake for 15 to 20 minutes on gas 3/140C (fan).  Place on a wire rack to cool.

 

Next.  Wrap your sweet smelling, delicious looking cookies before you are tempted to eat them yourself.  Well, perhaps you can try one… just to make sure they are yummy

 

Packaging your gift is the exciting part.  This is when you add the wow factor.

lavendershortbread-1-6

 

Purple stitched Ribbon by Jane Means
Image courtesy of The Contented Baker

Ribbons
I have a few ribbon designs that are perfect for packaging these very natural, rustic and lilac speckled cookies. Ribbons are very versatile when it comes to tying around jars, boxes, baskets and packages in order to compliment lavender’s colour and to emphasise the homemade nature of your gift.

 

chindeep

Image courtesy of Chindeep

Kilner jar ribbon

 

Gingham Ribbon by Jane Means

Cookie jar simplicity
We spotted this jar of Lavender sugar on Pinterest but this could easily be adapted for a  house-warming gift of cookies.  Freshly baked and placed in a prettily shaped, airtight, cookie jar, your Lavender shortbread will be irresistible when tied with ribbon and personalized with a hand-written gift tag.

 

Lavender bag

Lavender Ribbon by Jane Means
Gift Bag by The Carrier Bag Shop
Fresh Lavender by Clifton Nurseries

A little bag of shortbread cookies
Try placing 2 or 3 lemon and Lavender shortbread cookies in a decorative gift bags and adding the detail of a stitched purple ribbon bow to secure the folded closure, with a sprig of lavender tied in.  This would be ideal as a take home gift after a coffee morning, for example.

 

raspberry ribbon

Raspberry ribbons by Jane Means

A box of biscuits
Taking a simple box, lined with greaseproof paper and filled with lavender scented shortbread, try a combination of brown wrapping paper and a contrasting, colourful design, divided by a beautiful bow.

Paper plates

Paper plates by Talking Tables

Pink green ribbon

 

Ribbon by Jane Means
You could even cut a paper plate and fold it in to a basket…perfect for packaging cookies

A simple but perfectly pink, gorgeously green or beautiful blue paper plate is perfect to place your lemon and lavender biscuits upon.  You could even wrap it in cellophane and secure with purple or green ribbon and a sprig of lavender to finish.

jane means ribbons

Ribbons by Jane Means

Lavender shortbread & tea.
As the perfect compliment to a biscuit is a cup of tea, what about combining the gift of lavender shortbread with a beautiful, and possibly purple, cup and saucer?  Fill your teacup with shortbread biscuits and either, wrap with cellophane or place in a cellophane bag and secure with a matching (green) ribbon and a (purple) label. You could even double up and add some Peppermint Creams.

Now that I’ve enticed your tastebuds, it’s time to pop the kettle on and reach for a biscuit!

Happy Baking x

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International Gift Wrapping ideas to suit all cultures

After 20 years in the business, I’m now finding myself travelling the globe sharing my knowledge and decided it was time to write my latest post ‘International Gift Wrapping ideas to suit all cultures’. My in laws live in Japan, my second home is in Singapore, plus I have Scottish ancestry and run courses in Glasgow and have American relatives, so I’m fascinated how to wrap presents differently to suit the different nationalities and cultures. With all of this and my courses in UK, Singapore and Australia, I’ve dedicated a section in my book ‘Giftwrapped’

I’m a firm believer that first impressions count and it’s what is on the inside that counts…we’ve all heard that saying ‘Packaging is everything’

There are obvious symbolic similarities between Chinese and Japanese theming but two beautiful and very different oriental giftwrapping styles can easily be created.  The similarities come in the use of lavishly embellished silk and symbols such as fans and chopsticks, together with their respective and beautifully illustrative, calligraphic characters. I also love to wrap items creatively and constrasting colours like Yellow and Red

Chinese styled giftwrapping.  The flag of China inspires the use of red and golden yellow, and stars are very much a symbol.  A gift wrapped in shiny, red paper or red, silk fabric, tied with a golden yellow silk, sash ribbon needs only the addition of chop sticks slotted into the bow and a gift tag in the shape of a large, yellow star to achieve the required look.  Add a carefully chosen and perfectly positioned Chinese symbol or two to your wrapping paper.  With a little practice and painted in black, these symbols will instantly define your oriental theme.

Red stitched ribbon by Jane Means

Japanese styled giftwrapping.  With its red circular sunburst design on a white background, the Japanese flag is a good source of inspiration.  With a focus on the traditional colours of red, black and white, embellishments of chop sticks or tassels and the use of painted, red, Japanese symbols onto white paper with red, silk ribbon, a very traditional, Japanese style can be created.

Reversible Gift Wrap by Jane Means
Image Courtesy of The General Co

In addition, the ancient art of Japanese paper folding is ideal to introduce to this theme.  Using origami to add embellishments of simple fans or more complex flowers will, no doubt, make your gift look very pretty.  Paper pleating is a Japanese technique, which looks rather stunning and will impress any recipient.  It is an interesting fact that, historically, an odd number of pleats on the gift was used for a happy occasion, whilst an even number of pleats would have meant the gift was intended for a sad occasion.

Image courtesy of The French Tangerine

American styled giftwrapping.  Well, it is hard to think of America and not think of stars and stripes and red, white and blue.  Any combination of these colours is a great place to start.  For example, red and white striped paper with a blue ribbon, blue paper with red and white striped ribbon (see my red and cream striped grosgrain ribbon) or a combination of contrasting blue paper with white paper, centrally separated by a red ribbon.  To add American stars, position white star stickers on the blue paper.

Tartan by Scotland Shop

Scottish style giftwrapping.  I have various tartan ribbon designs in my range and when they are used generously against navy blue, red, forest green or parcel wrapping paper and combined with embellishments of heather or thistles, the Scottish theme is clear.  Add celtic symbols in the form of brooches, trinkets or hand painted emblems on homemade gift tags to enhance the theme. Having Scottish ancestry I also love to use Tartan and Tweeds in my Gift wrapping projects.

Image courtesy of Pinterest

Indian styled giftwrapping.  Famous for its vivid and spice-derived colours, India evokes thoughts of silk saris, bangles and opulent golden necklaces, lavishly embellished with precious stones.  The peacock, with its iridescent feathers, is the national bird of India and vivid blue, a rich green green and intense purple, the colours of the peacock, combined with embellishments of gold coloured chains,  pendants and varying textures of gold ribbon can form the strong basis of an Indian theme.  Brightly coloured layers of tissue paper offer the image of saris whilst tying in several golden bangles with a brightly coloured chiffon scarf adds to the embellishment of your gift.  Bright colours and opulence are the main features and the presence of a peackock feather, elephant charm or pendant or a handmade circular gift tag featuring the ‘Ashoka Shakra’, a 24-spoke blue wheel that appears on the Indian flag.

I am a huge fan of India. I have been several times and hope to run some future courses there.

Red Ribbon by Jane Means
Map Paper by Clifton Nurseries

Pick a country and try to capture the essence of its nature as you wrap your gift.  Perhaps the gift originates from that country or is to be given to a person from that location or to someone who is going to travel there soon…  Creating a personalised theme only serves to increase the meaning and quality of both the gift giving and receiving experience.

Jane Means is a Worldwide Gift Wrapping Consultant who works for Luxury Brands, Celebrities and Royalty

If you are stuck on what to give as a gift, check out Minding Manners who cover perfect Gift Giving on their brilliant etiquette workshops

Happy Wrapping

 

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Enjoy up to 80% discount in our Spring Edit. 48hrs only

We’ve an exciting few weeks ahead with the launch of our brand new website and new product lines, so for a limited time you can enjoy up to 80% discount in our Spring Edit. 48 hours only!

Our Flash sale ends on Wednesday and all UK orders will be sent out First Class

Here’s some of our featured items…

Reduced from £9.50 to £3.80 is this elegant lace planter which makes a perfect housewarming gift

 

Our Midnight Palm tissue is ideal for the bottom drawer and very on trend

And if you love a bargain, grab the last of our Whitby Stripe ribbon with 80% off while stocks last

We can’t wait to launch our new website with lots of new products in the pipeline, and will keep you updated with developments.

In the meantime happy shopping x

 

Categories: Spring | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Wrapped, stacked and strapped. Great Gift Wrapping ideas and Inspiration

As we approach certain times of year when multiple presents mean many hours of wrapping and there is creative desire to find a personal theme for the season. One possible solution may be a little quirky paper designing and some ‘wrapping, stacking and strapping’, such a  great gift wrapping idea

It is always good to get the children involved with present preparations and potato printed, hand drawn, polka dot and stripe painted, family photo montaged, collage glued, home-made wrapping paper is great fun to make.

When it comes to stacking presents, creating a mix and match range of paper designs really pulls your presents together and this can be achieved in perfectly when you are in charge of the designs.

Using inexpensive, brown parcel paper as a base, you can have fun adding red and green spots and stripes and strapping a pile of wrapped and stacked gifts together with red or green ribbon.

Present wrapping service

Ribbons by Jane Means

Colourful, seasonal stickers, paper-cut, stuck on snowflakes or Christmas tree and snowman shapes are some of many other options.  Select a combination of theme and colour and then design, print, pritt stick and paint until you have enough personally produced paper.

Construct your neatly stacked ‘tiered layer cake’ of carefully wrapped gifts and finish by strapping together with an appropriate and impressively seasonal ribbon.  Wide, wired ribbon is perhaps a wise choice for larger boxes, as it offers greater stability to your ‘stack’ but wide ribbon and big bows on small boxes look equally as appealing.  Whatever you choose to do, execute it precisely and aim to give ‘gift bundles’ that stand out and impress at first glimpse.

If you have four or more gift boxes of stacked, decreasing size, using tissue paper, wrap the bottom one in red, the next in dark green, then light green and top with gold.  Strap together with a golden ribbon and add a generous golden bow to the top.  Adding a few Christmas baubles to embellish your bow will add to the Christmas tree styled appeal of this pile. This was one creation that I did for a recent Scotchtape commercial

 

jane means for scotchtape

Image courtesy of 3M Scotchtape

Tips.  When using tissue paper, always use several sheets together to strengthen the stability of the wrapping.  A little double-sided tape between each precisely placed parcel is the secret to sustained stacking positioning and selecting gift boxes of steadily descending size will create a perfect pile of presents.

Whether you are giving multiple gifts or creating mini wrapped, stacked and strapped, table centre pieces, this is a highly enjoyable project and can be themed for any occasion or time of year.

If you are in the habit of giving table gifts, then a perfectly colour coordinated, central stack of wrapped goodies, with name tags could be a lovely starter to sit down to before dinner… As long as people understand that the biggest gift box at the bottom does not conceal a superior gift to that hiding in the tiny box at the very top!

It is possible to find inexpensive sets of cardboard stacking boxes in stationers, gift shops and toyshops.  Used for storage and playing, as well as for gift giving, these boxes can be brightly coloured and require no further wrapping or they may be constructed of buff coloured cardboard and be perfect to directly print or paint onto, if you are brave enough.

camillestyles.com

 

Image courtesy of Camille Styles

This is a great way to recycle outgrown, early learning cardboard stacking boxes, which can be over-painted or carefully wrapped with paper.  Now you have a beautiful set of size ranging  gift boxes.

Stacked, cubed boxes in plain colours can be easily painted to look like dice or you can use appropriately scaled round, white stickers.  This is a perfect theme for a board gamer of any age.

Jane Means throwing presents copy

 

Giving a stack of books this way is particularly lovely at any time of year.  Ibooks may be very popular these days but charity shops are a gold mine of inexpensive literary possibilities and wrapped, stacked and strapped, they make the perfect gift for any studious type.

Whether you are stacking two boxes or seven boxes, the idea of receiving, not one gift, but one presentation of multiple gifts, all combined and coordinated and tied together as one, makes quite a dramatic impression.

 

Happy Wrapping Folks!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Great Ribbon Decorating Ideas for Christmas

I’ve always had a love of textiles and trimmings and with the festive season upon us, I thought I’d share with you some great ribbon decorating ideas for Christmas.

Jane Means ribbon

Ribbon by Jane Means

Aside from the very obvious way that ribbon is used lavishly, luxuriously and in flamboyant, festive ways to wrap gift boxes at Christmas, it is an extremely versatile product that can be used all over the home to assist in the creation of an embellished and decorated Christmas.

 

What about selecting three or four colours to compliment your personal Christmas pallet and, instead of the traditional paper chain, making a ribbon chain or garland instead…  Ribbon widths can be uniform or you can mix widths and fabric types.

 

Baubles are beautiful on a tree but showering your Christmas tree with hand tied bows, large or small, or twirling wide, wired ribbon around and around your tree is beautiful if you wish to soften the style of decoration.

 

Wreaths with an abundance or red ribbon are seasonally enhanced and very appealing.

Ribbon wreath

Image Courtesy of Clifton Nurseries

Banisters and dining chairs need not go undecorated at this time of year.  Drape or wrap an evergreen garland from top to bottom of your staircase banister and dress with bows and hanging, curled ribbons, along with other festive decorations.  Dining chair backs, tied with a large ribbon with a snuggly held candy cane, place name ‘gift tag’ or prettily wrapped table gift are a practical addition to Christmas table settings.

Sophiasdecor

Image courtesy of Sophias Decor

If the pictures around the walls of your home appear neglected in terms of Christmas decoration, then embellish one top corner of random frames with a sprig of holly, tied with copious lengths of ribbon and secure with easily removed, non-damaging sticky tape.

 

Tall candlesticks are another seasonal decoration where snuggly tied bows and draping ribbons can add elegance.  An embellishment at the candle base and some well chosen satin or velvet ribbon on either one or a grouping of candles will enhance a table setting or fireplace and add that cosy Christmas feel that we all love.

Bauble ribbon

Image courtesy of Red Online

Light fittings are often designed in such a way that they lend themselves to being transformed into Christmas chandeliers.  With the addition of fine thread-suspended baubles, draped evergreen garlands and lots of twirled, tied and curled, hanging ribbons, a dramatic chandelier can quickly be created.  This can add an effective centrepiece to any room and is a great suggestion for light fittings that are positioned over dining tables.

Recycled crafts

Image courtesy of Recycled Crafts

Wherever evergreen garlands are hung, draped and displayed for Christmas, attaching randomly positioned, ribbon tied bows with a little florist wire always adds subtle, seasonal detail.  Bow-decorated, garlands, sit beautifully along fireplaces and window sills, fit, grandly from floors to ceilings in room corners and, when draped and equidistantly clipped, embellish seasonal table edges to perfection

I always love to see new creative used for ribbon, especially off cuts and roll ends. Feel free to share your ideas with us on Instagram and Facebook…we’d love to see your photos.  x

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Gift Wrapping at Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons with Jonathan Moseley

I am thrilled to have been invited to team up with leading floral designer and floristry industry consultant, Jonathan Mosely for a wonderful Winter Workshop event at the breathtaking location of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.

Created by the celebrated chef, Raymond Blanc OBE, this renowned and stunning manor house hotel and cookery school, nestled in the village of Great Milton, in Oxfordshire, has been somewhere I have wanted, so much, to visit for a very long time and now I am so lucky, not only to be staying there, but, to be demonstrating, alongside Jonathan, on December 19th, this year.

Le Manoir

Image courtesy of Amara

This fine hotel has held 2 Michelin stars since 1984, is synonymous with high quality, elegance and luxury and I cannot wait to see how the festive season is presented in such a wonderful location.

The special one-day event, entitled, ‘Deck the Halls’ will see Jonathan and myself teaming up to assist participants in their quest to craft an unforgettable Christmas.  Jonathan will be making some stunning seasonal flower displays whilst I will be presenting some imaginative and styles of festive gift wrapping.  Due to the prestigious location, there will also be an opportunity for all concerned to sample some spectacular dining in sumptuous surroundings and, I must confess, I am looking forward very much to spending a December day at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.

jonothan moseley

For those who do not know, Jonathan Mosely is a freelance floral designer, based in Derbyshire.  He is known for his humorous, friendly approach and, aside from appearing on ‘The Big Allotment Challenge’  BBC programme recently, he works as a floristry industry consultant, teaches the art and skill of floral display and takes commissions to design and execute ‘event flowers’ on a large scale.  He is famous for his floral artistry and skill and for combining his love of nature with his distinctive and innovative arranging techniques.

Christmas wreath

Image courtesy of Pinterest

 

I am excited to be sharing the spotlight with someone who is so highly talented and, given my own experience as a florist, I am looking forward to picking up some advice and advanced creative tips on December 19th.

The Manor house itself is one of the most treasured manor house hotels in the UK and the gardens have a reputation for being something very special to behold.  Aside from the lavender lined pathways, extensive English lawns and vegetable and herb gardens, the hotel has its own orchards, a mushroom valley which, among other varieties, produces shiitake mushrooms and there are rows of cloche tunnels, under which various flowers are grown for creative use in the hotel kitchen.  The hotel also boasts a water garden, dating back to the 16th Century.  It was created, by monks, who occupied the site at that time.

 


Jane Means cover girl

 

Photo courtesy of Journal Magazine

For those who are attending the event, I hope we can make it everything and so much more than you are hoping for.  It plans to be a most welcoming, enjoyable , sociable and creatively educational day and I look forward to meeting everyone there.

For more details head over to the Belmond Events Page

See you there x

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Jane Means launches a London stationery shop

Being so appreciative of the positive feedback and many requests for the return of my successful venture into ‘the pop up shop’ world of two years ago, I welcomed the opportunity to, once again, and I’ve some exciting news….Jane Means has opened a London pop up stationery shop within the elegant and established garden walls of Clifton Nurseries.

Jane Means new shop at Clifton Nurseries

In the run up to the opening,  pretty new products arrived at my studio, stylish display ideas developed in my head, and we dressed it exactly as I wished people to experience it…

Jane Means shop

This is my bright and bold, creative arcadia of colour.

 

Jane Means London Shop

It is sometimes hard to believe that what was once my very enjoyable and creative, kitchen table based hobby, is now my international, commercial success.  I am fortunate that so many others also appreciate beautifully wrapped gifts and that the screen-based world we live in still has room for the timeless elegance of hand-scripted wrapping paper and calligraphic gift tags.

stripe ribbon

 

Ribbon and tag by Jane Means
Calligraphy by Judy Broad

I am happy that many people share my love of patterned papers and of ribbons of variety and quality and that there is a constant quest by so many to find further creative ways to embellish, not only presents, but also homes, hotels, shops and restaurants.

We use touch screens for convenience but there is something beautiful about a brightly coloured quill, liquid ink on lovely paper and a warm, wax seal pressing a ribbon against a folded letter or ribbon-tied gift box.

Wax Seal and Lavender

Image courtesy of Melanie Ward
Wax Seals by Manuscript

My pop up shop will be full of stationery, gift wrapping and calligraphy ideas and I plan to present my products in creative and innovative ways to inspire visitors to try new wrapping techniques, to display pictures differently, to use ribbons in original and pretty ways and to consider traditional methods of writing styles that can be overlooked in present times.

The highly skilled Judy Broad will be hosting calligraphy events in my pop up shop, providing demonstrations and instruction on how to achieve pristine and poetic penmanship that can bring a distinctive and personal touch to such items as gift tags, journals, invitations, letters and handmade wrapping paper.

gift wrapping embellishments

 

Ribbons by Jane Means

I will be demonstrating creative gift-wrapping techniques to wow your friends and family and offering embellishment tips, as well as showing how a range of beautiful bows can be effectively and efficiently tied.

I am so excited about the intensely coloured and highly patterned wrapping papers and beautiful, intricately dye cut greetings cards, among other delights, that I have sourced specifically for my pop up store and more items are arriving constantly.

Jane Means London Shop

‘Excited’ is the best word to describe the prospect of my shop’s opening day but I am also a little nervous.  I wish it to be perfect in every way and for everyone to be able to find something they love.

The shop will be open 7 days a week and you can also enjoy a delicious lunch or afternoon tea at the scrumptious Quince Tree Cafe on Site as well as wander through the idyllic gardens of Clifton.

Voted the ‘Most Charming Restaurant with a Garden’ by Vogue, the bustling cafe is set in a conservatory surrounded by flowers with a mouthwatering menu and delightful staff.

Quince tree Cafe

Our new shop Monday 12th September opened infront of the press with my dear friend Sophie Conran cutting the ribbon.

Jane Means Shop launch

We look forward to seeing you and don’t forget to share your photos and thoughts on our Twitter, Facebook and Instagram Page

Jane x

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Gift Wrapping Event, Haberdashery Closet, Luxury Wrap & Stationery, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Animal Inspired Ribbon and Gift Wrapping Ideas

For many, the best ideas and inspiration comes from their beloved pets, so I’ve decided to dedicate a blog post to Animal inspired ribbon and gift wrapping ideas. Whether you have dogs, cats, horses or chickens we have some great ideas lined up.

cat and dog ribbons

I’ve always been surrounded by animals being a farmers daughter and designed a controversial pet ribbon collection back in 2012. Sadly it was copied by our British manufacturer and is still talked about

Ros shiers paper

Image courtesy of Ros Shiers

Even at a young age I gave my dog birthday presents, and locals thought we were barking mad when we had a doggy fancy dress birthday party for owners at their muts.

margo dog present

My late labrador Margo couldn’t resist being a Gift Wrapping assistant and loved course days where she would be wandering around the studio

Anyone who is crafty is always looking for new and creative ways to make their gifts, from the present itself all the way to the finishing touches of the wrapping paper and ribbons. When picking out the gift-wrap and choosing the design of the packaging, it’s always good to keep the recipient’s personality in mind. For example, if your father is a car enthusiast, you can personalise the present with a ‘car design’ wrapping paper and a wide black paper band to make it look like a road. It’s all about knowing your audience.

dog box copy

(image credit: mrprintables.com)

If the recipient is a child, a fun theme to incorporate into gift-wrapping is animal shapes. Rather than using paper with dogs and cats on them, incorporate your origami skills into the gift to mimic animal silhouettes. Children love presents from the get go, but taking the time to add something special on the outside of the gifts will give them more joy than a toy that’s simply been placed in a gift bag. You can find DIY animal wrapping ideas on Pinterest and various blogs, though if you’re looking for a tutorial easy enough to get your kids involved in wrapping a friend’s birthday present, Mr. Printables makes use of white paper so that toddlers can paint the paper according to the animals they prefer.
(image credit: linesacross.com)

cat dog box copy

Another great animal box design you can experiment with is a gift box that locks the paper in with ears as tabs. As shown on Line Across, this gift-wrap is reusable and just as fun to put together as the previous wrapping idea.

 

jane means for scotchtape

 

Image courtesy of Scotchtape

Despite these DIY wrapping ideas seeming like they only work for kids, they can actually be applied to anyone who loves animals, or that is generally young at heart. With so many adults fascinated with brands like Hello Kitty and playing games with cute and cuddly themes, lots of people will appreciate a person putting in the effort to make the gift’s presentation as adorable as the example shown above.

We also love these gifts for our beloved pets…

BHS wreath

Dog Bones Wreath by BHS

 

cat present

 

Image courtesy of Pinterest

petprint

I just love these Pet Portraits that I found on Not On The High Street

Image courtesy of Barley and Bayley

junk jewels

 

How about these vibrant watches for cat lovers?

Image Courtesy of Junk Jewels

chicken egg company

 

And how about these cute little egg covers, perfect for an Easter party or pastel decor?

Image courtesy of notonthehighstreet

rchie

 

On a final note I’m enjoying a few days hidden away in Cornwall designing my new collections and have been enjoying the company of a friends beloved Parsons Terrier called Archie…

 

Categories: Inspiration, Ribbon, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

10 inspirational gift wrapping ideas for Dads Birthday or Fathers Day

No matter how humble the gift, dads know it is the thought that counts and so I have put together a selection of gift wrapping ideas for Dads Birthday and Fathers Day , suitable for the wide range of dads out there.

ribbon key

 

Vintage Grey Ribbon by Jane Means

Why not inject a little humour and mystery into your dad’s day by neatly wrapping his very own garden shed key in a small box.  His real gift will be wrapped and hidden inside the shed but he will have to engage in a little treasure hunt to find it!  An ideal method for the gift of gardening gloves, DIY items or, perhaps, in the shed, you have hidden a batch of dad’s favourite homemade cookies, placed in a jar, perfectly tied with beautiful ribbon in dad’s favourite colour…

Fathers Day gift wrapping

 

Brown and Orange Ribbon by Jane Means

For the dad who loves being surrounded by nature, a natural look, with hints of the countryside can be easily achieved by using traditional, rustic-looking brown paper, always a favourite of mine, and accessorizing with budding twigs, feathers, herbs or wheat.  Using herbs will also give a wonderful country garden scent to your gift

wax seal gift wrapping

 

Wax Seal by Manuscript Company          Narrow Slate Grey Stitched Ribbon by Jane Means

Dads really appreciate presents that have a personalized or signature element to them and so, for the ‘city gent’ dad, what about using the Financial Times as wrapping paper, add a formal looking ribbon and complete your smart wrapping by adding a wax seal for a very sophisticated look.

Hamper gift wrapping

 

True, plants and contents from Clifton Nurseries

Who does not love to receive a hamper full of goodies?!  Make your dad feel special with a mini-hamper packed full of tempting treats and, perhaps, his favourite tipple.  In a simple rustic basket, wrapped with raffia or ribbon and, by tying in wooden cutlery, a napkin or a bottle opener, your dad may not have to leave his chair for many happy hours on Father’s Day!  Sitting on a ruffled bed of tissue paper, olive or preserve filled jars and bags of delicious fudge or chocolates can be tied with ribbon, whilst further specifically selected surprises lurk beneath, making dad feel pampered.

 

Rossi paper

 

Paper by Rossi

For many dads, cars are a favourite topic of conversation and this beautifully coloured and elegant ‘car design’ wrapping paper by Rossi is ideal to wrap a car enthusiast’s Father’s Day gift!  A wide black paper band wrapped around the box provides a road and the addition of a small car model, preferably dad’s favourite, adds the personal touch.  When in doubt, a red sports car usually does the trick!   A nice new bottle of car shampoo could be the perfect accompaniment to such packaging and would also provide dad with something to do too!

DaEnglish

Image Courtesy of DaWanda

There are lots of DIY enthusiasts out there and dads who prize their ever-increasing collection of tools would, no doubt, appreciate the time taken to create a personalized ribbon with tiny nuts and bolts attached.  Combined with brown wrapping paper and, with small wrenches, spanners or screwdrivers tied securely into the bow, the perfect gift inside would be a super-duper shiny new tool for dad’s collection

Randomly scattering and colour- copied, traditional playing cards can produce a very striking,  black, white and red design, which many poker, gin rummy and bridge playing dads alike would appreciate.   Matching with black and red ribbons and using a paper-backed playing card as a gift tag produces a personally themed and very attractive gift box.  The king of hearts might be a good card to ‘play’ as the gift tag for Father’s Day.

map gift wrapping

 

Petrol Blue Stitched Ribbon by Jane Means – Vintage Maps bought at Portobello Market, London

For the dad who travels with work or simply loves to travel, using old or photocopied maps for wrapping paper and gift tags produces a very personalized gift.  Choose a map featuring a country or city that is special to your dad and, for extra detail, select a ribbon bearing the colours of that country’s flag.  The map may bring back shared memories of a family holiday,  be of a place you know your dad longs to visit or, perhaps, the gift inside is evocative of that country’s culture…

The well-groomed dads, who love the feel of a crisp, white shirt and a good suit might like their Father’s Day present wrapped in glossy editorial pages, depicting smart, fashionable menswear.   Select a ribbon that compliments your improvised wrapping paper and replace the bow with a Windsor knot to add a ‘dad-approved’ smartness to the way his gift is ‘tied’!  If I may be so bold, ties of red, purple and shades of blue are considered to be the most positive colours to wear…

burgundy stitched ribbon by jane means

 

Burgundy Ribbon by Jane Means – Music Paper from Les Puces, Paris

If music is one of your dad’s greatest interests, then wrap the Father’s Day gift he will love in the music he loves.  Antique sheet music can be found in charity shops and at flea markets and may also be photocopied onto new paper of your own selection.  Small rolled up scrolls of music and a contrasting ribbon results in a most elegantly presented gift, which is personalized to your dad’s musical taste.

 

Alternatively, you could use plain or traditional brown paper and aesthetically position selected handwritten song lyrics onto the gift box after wrapping.  Black writing on cream paper and white writing on black paper are two of the many possible options.   Handwriting also adds another personal touch. Personally I love understated and classic Monochrome.

Black gift wrapping

 

Black and White Dotty Ribbon by Jane Means – Black paper by Paperchase

Gifts offered with thoughtful, creative and personal touches are, I believe, always the best ones, as they come straight from the heart, and Father’s Day or a special birthday is a perfect opportunity to show that it is not about the size of the gift but about the size of the heart that gives it.

Happy Wrapping!

 

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Ribbon Craft and Bow Making Course to be held in Sydney, Australia

I’m delighted to be running my first bespoke course in Ribboncraft and Bow Making in Sydney, Australia on April 11th.

 

bow making courses

Pink spotty ribbon available from Jane Means

I’ve teamed up with Melissa at Sew Make Create who will be hosting the courses and the evening will be fun of trimmings, lace, ribbons and fun!

ribboncraft workshop

 

Wired Ribbon available at Jane Means

The one off ribbons and bows masterclass will be from 6.30 – 9.30pm and bookings can be made online. Courses cost $90 inclusive of all materials and you’ll be taking home a goody bag of your handmade creations which will include a hair adornment, corsage, necklace or a handmade bracelet…all made with your own fair hands!

Ribbon tying course

I have always had an addiction with ribbons (and still do).  What started with a shoebox full of remnants turned in to a real passion. Now we have over 100,000 rolls of ribbon in stock!

Bow making class

 

And don’t forget I have my first comprehensive Gift Wrapping Courses taking place in Melbourne on Saturday 9th April. You can attend a full or mini course with several pricing options and bookings can be made online via WeTeachMe

During both courses you’ll also be able to pick up a signed copy of my book Giftwrapped

bow making

Don’t forget if you are based in Australia, that I have a few available days left and can also offer one to one training packages.  Just drop us an email at info@janemeans.co.uk

Have fun! x

 

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