How to Wrap Presents Japanese Style
If you have ever shopped at a department store in Japan (or indeed at The Japanese Shop), you probably will have noticed the beautiful way in which items are wrapped. Japanese style gift wrapping is a particular art form that many marvel at, which is why we have created this post explaining how to use a Furoshiki wrapping cloth, so you can really impress your friends and family this Christmas.
The first section briefly covers Japanese paper wrapping, while the second looks at the more traditional (and simpler) Furoshiki gift wrap method. Then, you will be able to wrap your stunning Japanese Christmas gifts in the appropriate way!
Japanese Paper Wrapping
Contemporary Japanese style gift wrapping is rather like origami in that it follows a strict sequence of precise folds. The beauty of it is that once you have got used to the basic technique, you can be more experimental, incorporating intricate pleats and decorations.
You will need:
- Good quality wrapping paper
- Clear tape (+ decorative tape, optional)
- Ribbon or mizuhiki, to decorate
- Gift tag (optional)
This video from Paper Guru’s YouTube channel covers the standard Japanese paper wrapping technique.
Once you have got the hang of this, it’s worth having a look at through some of the more decorative Japanese style gift wrapping ideas on this channel. Paper Guru’s projects range from pop-up butterfly embellishments to complex peacock-tail pleating, and they all look absolutely stunning.
You may also wish to try your hand at mizuhiki as an alternative to decorating with ribbon. This traditional Japanese craft involves winding decorative twine into knots and bows to create flowers, butterflies and much more. A quick YouTube search brings up hundreds of tutorials.
If you’re good at origami, you could also decorate your gifts with tiny paper flowers and swans.
Traditional Japanese Style Gift Wrapping
What is Furoshiki Gift Wrap?
If all that folding and decorating seems like too much effort, you might prefer the more traditional form of Japanese gift wrapping, Furoshiki. This involves using Furoshiki (a Japanese gift wrapping cloth) to wrap gifts in a bundle. It’s far simpler and, because the cloth can be reused, it’s more environmentally friendly – and the recipient gets an extra gift thrown into the bargain.
You will need:
Furoshiki… and that’s all!
Here’s a video guide to wrapping various items using Furoshiki, this time from Recycle Now.
If you’re also giving a card, this can be tucked into the fold of the fabric for an added element of surprise. Other than that, no decoration is required as a beautiful piece of furoshiki fabric will speak for itself.
Using these Japanese gift wrapping techniques, either modern style or using a traditional Japanese style of gift wrapping, it will give your presents a real edge and is guaranteed to impress your loved ones. However, it takes time and if you have a lot of gifts to wrap, it can turn into a monumental task.
At The Japanese Shop, we offer a free Japanese style gift-wrapping service to make your life that little bit easier. Simply select this option from the drop-down menu before you place your order and your Japanese gift will arrive perfectly wrapped and ready to give! If you need a little gift inspiration this Christmas, just take a look at our Christmas gifts page or our blog on Japanese Christmas Gift Ideas and Inspiration. Also, don't forget about those special little stocking fillers!