If this is the tree that says Home for the Holidays, then it absolutely had to include some presents. It feels a little bit like a cheat, these present ornaments are so easy. But like so many of my favorite ornaments through the years, they manage to do a lot of heavy lifting. Since most ornaments are round balls, it mixes things up by changing the shape, taking up a bunch of space, and providing a big chunk of color. And since you can put any kind of paper on it, you can use this ornament to create fantastically ornate color palettes. If you like to have a tree that matches your living room, you could use this ornament to make that happen whether your living room is puce or chartreuse.
You can wrap up anything you want, you just need to make it lightweight enough to not drag down the tree. I had these box lids left over from the Santa Buckets I made last year, so I glued them together to make my box. Styrofoam cubes work great, or upholstery foam, or whatever cardboard boxes you can get your hands on.
Cut a piece of paper big enough to wrap your box in. Wrap the paper around the box and pinch each fold to crease it. I then take the paper off the box and give those folds another good press with my fingers to really crisp up all those corners. To make it extra neat, I folded one end under just about 1/4″.
Wrap the paper back around the box and glue in place. I used hot glue for this project because it was a whole lot faster than liquid glue, and because tape doesn’t really hold up well over the years.
Press the sides in and let the other sides fold into points. Since this is an ornament and not a present that only has to look nice enough to be torn open, I took my time to get those points neat, and to fold any rogue pieces so they were hidden by the pretty points.
The ribbon here is two parts. One piece of ribbon that wraps the package and ties in a bow, and the other piece of ribbon serves as the ornament hanger. Run the hanger ribbon underneath both layers of package ribbon before tying it in a knot.
I don’t decorate with presents very often. I know some people who wrap empty shoe boxes and put them under the tree all month long. It looks beautiful, but the reason I got into decorating so big was because I didn’t want to encourage the piles of presents everywhere. With 11 trees the whole house is a party without any extravagant overspending. But if I’m thinking about Home for the Holidays and family traditions, I have to include the exchanging of presents. I’m just going to have to pretend these little packages are filled with practical gifts like winter clothes and books.