How do you wrap a present?
In this blog we have invited Tania Humphrey from the Big Red Bow to give you some top tips on wrapping presents, and a little bit about her service too.
My name is Tania Humphrey and together with my husband Greg, we are the founders of Big Red Bow Ltd. Based near Banbury, Oxfordshire, we are a small business offering a complete gift service.
Your company is called Big Red Bow, what made you choose that name?
I chose the name Big Red Bow because I wanted something that represented a gift box. When I think of a classic image of a gift box I think of a shiny wrapping and a big red bow, hence the name. I hope it provides a good indication of what I do.
How long have you wanted to start your own business?
Since Covid, I began to seriously think about starting my own business. My corporate job had changed beyond recognition and I was no longer enjoying it. I also knew the company was about to implement a major restructure and that Group roles like mine would no longer be required so I was beginning to think about what I could do next.
Why did you want to start your own business?
I liked the idea of doing something I really enjoyed for the latter part of my career. I’m a creative and hadn’t really been able to utilise that side of myself through my corporate role. I also wanted to have more control around what I do.
Have you always loved wrapping presents?
It took me a while to decide on the type of business I wanted to create. I’ve always loved Christmas when I set aside a whole day to wrap my own gifts as I love it so much. I know a lot of people don’t enjoy doing that part so I began to think maybe there could be a business there. After some research it appeared that no one in my geographical area is doing this but I believe there is a market for it, and so I formed big Red Bow.
What are your top tips for wrapping presents?
My Top 5 Tips for a professional looking wrap are;
- Use a good quality paper. There’s nothing worse than putting in lots of effort to make it look pretty then finding there’s a hole in it because the wrapping paper quality was poor. There are lots of affordable, lovely papers around now, including Joanna’s Hopping Dog range which is fantastic quality.
- Use double sided tape. Most people don’t and it can make a huge difference. Most double sided tapes can be torn easily with your fingers so you don’t even need scissors!
- Be precise in your cutting. Too much paper can end up with a bulky and messy looking gift, too little can be frustrating! Take your time to cut as accurately as you can and trim off any excess as you go.
- Think about colours and textures to make your gift stand out. If you’re not good at putting colours together there are thousands of colour group charts online which really help you see how colours work together. Use different types of ribbon to create a bit of texture, there are so many different types around these days, velvet, satin, raffia, lace, string....
- Finally just take your time. If you can, put aside a period of time when you won’t be disturbed. Set out all your gifts and materials, put on some music, make a nice drink and relax and enjoy the wrapping. Use online tutorials if you need them and don’t be too ambitious if you’re a beginner. Better to make a simple wrap look perfect than an elaborate one look messy!
How important is the ribbon in wrapping a present?
The ribbon is the finishing touch for me. There are lots of different types on the market, practically any colour and pattern is available and ribbons come in all different widths and materials so you really can find the perfect accompaniment to your wrap. I love how a ribbon can coordinate or clash and how you can add another texture or dimension with a bow. And of course it doesn’t have to be a bow, you can tie a simple knot and trim the ends at an angle or you can make a messy pile of ribbons or strings to stick on top of a bottle or canister shaped gift.
Do you run workshops or training sessions, (please list if you have any up and coming sessions)
I run workshops and will have some dates later this year.....watch this space and also my social media pages.
Workshops can be tailored to suit the attendees. My standard workshops are usually 3 hours long, they are a fully interactive session where I show approx. 4 different wraps, usually including how to make a gift bag. We have a lovely coffee break where we can get to know each other a bit and there is always time for 121 help and questions throughout.
What trends in wrapping paper are there for 2023?
My wrapping designs are inspired by many different things, fashion, architecture, art, interior designs, landscapes...
This year pastel colours and textures are very much in vogue and you will see some of that trend reflected in my wraps. In art I see a resurgence of cartoon and graphic styles which I love. As an artist myself, my style is very graphic and I’m currently designing a range of wraps to reflect the cartoon trend. Keep an eye on my socials to see what’s new.