For a basic, year-round wrapping station, gather these items and store in a box or bin:
- Solid-color paper. It may be more expensive than the poinsettia and sleigh-bells five-pack, but when paired with the right ribbons, it can be used for all occasions―Christmas, Hanukkah, birthdays, weddings, baby showers. Order the paper in bulk so you're never caught without it on hand.
- Solid ribbon in contrasting or complementary colors. Consider grosgrain ribbon―unlike paper or plastic ribbons, which crimp or fold when you tie them and which all too readily show mistakes, grosgrain can be retied and reused.
Try: A rainbow of ribbons to suit any occasion―yellow, aqua, pink, white, red, and Kelly green. Kate's Paperie, $9 a spool (11 yards long, one inch wide), katespaperie.com.
- Double-sided tape.
- Scissors (used only for cutting wrapping paper and ribbon, so they'll stay sharp and clean).
- Bags. That gigantic teddy bear, that star-shaped cardboard lantern―they'd be impossible, or at least punishing, to wrap were it not for bags.
Try: Giant gift sacks from the Gift Wrap Company, which come in a variety of holiday and nonholiday prints. $4.25 each (includes matching ribbon and gift card), 800-443-4429.