Whenever I wrap a box, I inevitably crinkle the paper and have either too much or not enough tape to hold the whole thing together.
I’m also a big fan of grabbing the nearest wrapping-type paper, usually a newspaper — the Sunday comics if I can find them — and using that.
But even I know that a present looks even better with a big bow on top. In the past, I’ve just stuck one of those premade bows on the package (usually over the messy spot to help camouflage it), and called it a day. Even though I have a ribbon stash that could stretch for miles, I never really used it for anything but trim.
The book The Complete Photo Guide to Ribbon Crafts by Elaine Schmidt (Creative Publishing International, $24.99) has changed how I look at ribbon.
With more than 700 color photos and 100 projects, the book is a step-by-step guide for creating bows and flowers, as well as showing techniques for embroidery, weaving, patchwork, knitting and many other ideas.
With all the presents and decorations that go up this time of year, this book is a handy guide for any crafter, especially if you are up to making some poinsettia bows and wreaths.
The ribbon-wrapped mirror can easily be converted to a Christmas decoration (with or without the mirror) by using some holiday-colored ribbon.
14-inch lengths of ribbon, ranging in widths from 1/2-inch to 1 1/2-inches (almost any kind can be used for this project: satin, sheer, grosgrain, taffeta or wire edge)
Round foam wreath form, 9 x 1 1/2 x 1/2 inches
7-inch round mirror (optional)
Wrap a length of ribbon around the wreath and knot the ribbon at the outside of the form. Cut the ribbon ends in a small V to create a festive ruffle detail. Add a small ribbon loop hanger to the back of the form. Glue the mirror to the center back.