I don’t know about you, but sometimes I’m pressed for a gift idea. A wedding or birthday party springs up that I’ve forgotten about, or maybe I’ve just been invited to an event on a whim. Maybe a friend has just had a baby — because births are difficult to predict, most of us are often left without a gift or even an idea of what to give the new parents. In these sorts of situations, a bottle of wine (or even a celebratory bottle of Champagne) can be a perfect gift.
How do you gift wrap a wine bottle? The problem in wrapping a bottle of wine (or any bottle) is the shape. Whereas most gifts come in boxes or can be placed in boxes without looking too tacky, a bottle’s shape presents some unique shapes which are a challenge to wrap.
There is always the option of placing the bottle in a gift basket of sorts (see my article “How do you make a wine gift basket?”), and this is especially appropriate if the bottle you’re gifting is particularly fancy.
Most wine stores have several products to assist you if you’re extremely short on time or would rather not attempt to gift wrap a wine bottle yourself. Items like drawstring bags (perfectly sized for various sizes of wine bottles) or even decorative cardboard or paper sleeves are relatively inexpensive and provide the coverage you want when gift wrapping. Also, some of these products can help to personalize the gift — I’ve seen wine stores selling cover-up bags emblazoned with a sports team’s logo, the names of popular universities, and even phrases like “It’s a boy!” or “Merry Christmas”. However, as these items will be seen by some as a bit on the tacky side, it may be nicer to wrap the bottle yourself.
Traditional Wine Bottle Wrap
The traditional wine bottle wrap would be tissue paper (or tinted plastic wrap) surrounding the bottle itself and tied at the neck of the bottle with a length or two of color coordinated ribbon or string. You’ll find that if you use enough tissue paper or plastic wrap, the “leftovers” from the wrapping will bloom from the top of the bottle and cover the neck completely, also adding a nice decorative element. When selecting a color of tissue paper, remember that dark or deeply saturated colors (red, gold, green, black, etc) will work better to conceal the contents.
Method For Gift Wrapping A Wine Bottle
Another popular method for gift wrapping a wine bottle is an “incomplete” or “partial” wrap. Wine lovers won’t be surprised that you’re gifting them a bottle, but may relish the surprise of the specific vintage or variety of wine you’re gifting. Luckily, covering up the bottle’s label requires less time and materials than wrapping the bottle itself, and offers many opportunities for creativity.
Ribbon enhanced with wire at its edges can be a quick and attractive label cover — simply select two or three colors or patterns of wire ribbon and twist them around the label of the wine, concealing the label and adding a touch of elegance to your presentation. I have even seen people cut more traditional wrapping paper to size and cover the bottle’s label all the way around with the paper. This gives you the chance to add a personalized note right on the paper, or attach one to the paper with a bit of tape.
There are many ways to gift wrap a wine bottle — many of which aren’t covered here. If you have a unique suggestion for gift wrapping wine, post it over at the AskDeb.com forum. I’d be happy to hear your idea and share it with others.
Remember that a bottle of wine is both a thoughtful and useful gift for many occasions. Don’t let the odd shape of a wine bottle keep you from wrapping your gift — just use one of the suggestions above. The gift recipient will appreciate the personal touch.
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