How to make hand-printed wrapping paper  

A beautiful, sustainable and surprisingly easy way to make your presents stand out.

We love nothing more than getting creative over the festive season. Here our Seasalt artist Matt Johnson, who each year designs our illustrated wrapping paper, shares one of his favourite ways of making your own: potato printing.

Potato prints are not just for kids; we use them all the time to create textures and patterns for our prints and illustrations. They are also great for making bold, modern wrapping paper. If you’re giving a gift to someone who appreciates hand-crafting or you want some gifts to look extra special, this is just the job.

You’ll need

  • Potatoes
  • Kitchen knife
  • Craft knife or scalpel with a sharp new blade
  • Paint – acrylic is good as it’s opaque and dries quickly
  • Brush – reasonably big so you can ink up you potato stamp quickly
  • Kitchen towel
  • Paper – we’re using brown packing paper
  • Card or luggage labels
  • Hole punch
  • String, ribbon or raffia

Step 1 – Cut your potato

Keep the design really simple. Bold geometric shapes like triangles and stars work best. Use the shape of the potato if you can. For example, just cut into quarters to give a bold semi-circle.

Once your design is cut, dry off the potato with kitchen towel and you’re ready to print.

Step 2 – Colours & paper

Think about colours carefully before you print and keep to just one or two. Match the colour of your string or ribbon and gift cards too.

If you have lots to wrap, print up a long roll of paper and then cut it up. For small items, A3 or A4 will do the trick. I prefer using brown packing paper, but recycled white paper can also look good with a bold print.

Step 3 – Print

Place your prints close together if you’re wrapping small items or further apart for bigger presents. Fold a tiny card or use a luggage label and add a single print to make a matching gift card.

Presents wrapped in hand-printed wrapping paper

Step 4 – Wrap

Now it’s just a case of putting it all together. Hole punch the corner of your gift cards and thread them onto your string, ribbon or raffia.

Hand-printed wrapping paper and gift tags using potato prints

Why not finish the look with our Christmas folk-mouse present toppers, or hand printed gift tags?


Don’t forget to share what you make using #SeasaltArtsClub