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Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Free Cellophane Gift Packaging from Boxes of Tea

more free gift packaging ideas

Do you have any food or spa gifts that you'd like to package in clear cellophane for gifting? This kind of gift-packaging can be very appealing for both homemade and commercially-made gifts. I can think of several commercially-made gifts that come in a large bag that could be divided up into smaller gifts by repackaging. Bath bombs, candies, nuts, and even tea bags often come several to a large package, making them ideal for divvying up into personal gifts.

Both large and small boxes of tea come over-wrapped in thin cellophane to preserve the freshness of the tea itself. This same cellophane can be carefully removed from the package and repurposed/recycled into gift packaging. Perhaps you recall seeing this post, where I showed you how I used the cellophane from a tea box to overwrap a bar of homemade soap. I carefully cut the cellophane off the box and wrapped the soap as one would a boxed gift, using glue stick to seal the cellophane wrapping in place of tape. I want to emphasize that you do have to carefully cut away this type of thin cellophane, as it can tear. With that said, it is free packaging for gifts. And free is always a good thing, right?

Yesterday, I was filling the birthday gift bag that I made from an H & M store shopping bag, and needed 2 small cellophane gift bags for repackaging commercial candy as part of the gift. I have these 2 small boxes of holiday tea that both came over-wrapped in cellophane. Once removed from the boxes, these would make perfect little gift bags for candy.

After turning the boxes on end, I carefully cut the top off of the cellophane from one of the ends of each, leaving the rest of the cellophane in an open box-like shape.

I carefully scrunched and slid the cellophane off of each box until I had an empty rectangular "bag" for each.

The bags were now ready for filling. Once I'd added the candy of my choosing, I straightened and cut an ordinary twist-tie in half and used these to secure the candy bags closed. Tied up with ribbons and I have a couple of nice-looking bags of candy for gifting.

Repurposing the cellophane packaging from my boxes of tea is not only a freebie, saving me money on gift wrap, but it also gives a second use to something that might otherwise go straight to a landfill.  So much of holiday gifting creates excess waste. I think that it's nice to add a few gifts that do something good for a change.


  1. I am very impressed that you were able to get those "bags" off in one piece, but where there's a will there's a way. Not quite as thrifty, but inexpensive, are similar bags I buy at the end of season that are less than a penny a piece. I don't use them all the time, but they are easy to store. I keep them with our gift wrap.

  2. Lili,

    Another brilliant idea! It's pretty apparent I don't do enough gift giving! At least I'll know where to go for brilliant ideas. If I ever need a clear bag for wrapping candy or something else I go to a big box of baggies with the flip top (not the zipper top) and use those. I bought a big box (perhaps 1,000) at a restaurant store maybe 10 years ago. My kids never understood how that flip top works to hold a sandwich and so they sit it my cupboard. The days of lunch making for school are over and I still have a lot of those baggies left. We mostly use washables for lunches but my son makes lots of sandwiches for his lunches and stores them in the freezer. He makes upwards of 4 dozen at a time and that lasts him for several months. He now uses these flip top baggies and stores them in a gallon ziploc bag. I use the baggies for giveaway goodies with a twist tie.


  3. You never cease to amaze me with your ingenuity! I learn so much from you...thank you! I am trying more often to think out of my comfort zone to reuse and repurpose. The others in my family think I am the queen of frugal....but, they have no idea how many other things there are we can do....and I am the one learning from the Queen...thanks much!!

  4. This is a great idea, Lili. I would have never thought to do that. I'm usually an animal when it comes to taking those off the tea boxes. LOL

  5. Like Belinda, I tend to be a rip-and-tear kind of person when it comes to opening tea boxes. Your idea is great and cellophane does look pretty when used as packaging.

  6. Hi Live and Learn,
    that's nice that you've been able to buy bags so inexpensively. I've bought a couple of packages of cellophane bags at the end of season, but not as cheap as a penny each. I usually pay about 5 cents each, even on clearance. Do you have favorite stores to shop after the holidays for gift wrap and supplies? I try to hit up Michael's just after Christmas.

    Anyway, with the cellophane on the tex boxes, I found that if I just scrunched the cellophane down, it came off without too much trouble. I feared one would tear (and I needed both), but just being careful and taking my time (all of 2 minutes per box) did the trick.

    Have a lovely evening, Live and Learn.

  7. Hi Alice,
    oh yeah, those flip-top baggies. Those were the new and improved sandwich bags when I was very young. They were an improvement over the alligator-bags with a twist tie. Now, almost all of the sandwich bags are zip type. So, for something that's designed to be used once has a fancy (read expensive) plastic zipper. My mom always wrapped our sandwiches in waxed paper. My friend's mom used the alligator bags with twist ties -- they were living the high-life! The flip top are pretty good and when you find them now (some dollar stores), they tend to be many in a box for very little money. That's great that your son can use them now. And he's very smart to make all of those sandwiches in advance. Just grabbing a sandwich in the morning, to go, maybe with a piece of fruit, makes for an easy lunch.

    I hope you have a nice evening, Alice!

  8. Hi Linda,
    Oh my, that;s such a sweet thing to say. Thank you, but I think we are each "queens" with our own specialties in frugality. I truly mean this when I say that I have learned so much from everyone else and I am extremely thankful for such a lovely group of friends, here.

    Have a lovely evening, Linda!

  9. Hi Belinda,
    I laughed so hard when I read the way you described how you take the cellophane off of packages -- like an animal. Yes, this describes me most of the time, that is if I don't need the cellophane for a project or gift wrap. It's like being a kid tearing through wrapping on a birthday present! Thank you for the vivid description, Belinda!

    Have a wonderful evening!

  10. Thank you, Bonnie. I hope this tip can be useful to you or someone else, here.
    have a lovely evening, Bonnie!

  11. Hi Kris,
    Thank you. Whatever works, right? I needed a couple of small cellophane bags for candy and I happened to have 2 on my 2 boxes of holiday tea (which will also be divided into bundles in the gifts).

    Hope you're enjoying a pleasant evening, Kris!

  12. "Do you have favorite stores to shop after the holidays for gift wrap and supplies? I try to hit up Michael's just after Christmas."

    I find Walmart has good prices on a lot of things after a little while and those bags aren't that popular, so they get marked down a lot. The regular wrapping paper usually goes fast.

  13. hi Live and Learn,
    the other thing I found on clearance after last Christmas at Walmart were bags of bows for about 10 cents per bag. You're right, I don't recall seeing any wrapping paper with the end of clearance items.


  14. I've been out of town so am just now catching up reading your posts. I agree with Linda that your ingenuity is unbelievable! I learn so much from you as well. And Belinda's description of opening cellophane made me laugh out loud. I will definitely be a bit more careful when removing the cellophane from my tea boxes! Thanks so much for everything Lili. Have a lovely Thanksgiving with your family and that free turkey!

  15. Hi Lynn,
    Aw, thank you! Yes, I laughed at Belinda's description too. But doesn't that fit?
    I hope that you and your family also have a lovely Thanksgiving!


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