How to wrap a gift voucher

Published: 24th July 2016

Experiences are everything, but how do we wrap good times in a bow? Here are some ways to ensure gift vouchers excite, surprise and delight our kids.

It was Mother Teresa who said: “It's not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving.” Increasingly, parents are concerned that some see this ‘love’ as directly proportional to the extravagance of what’s in a gift box. But there is an alternative: give an experience. Whether it’s music classes, surf lessons or horse riding camp, more parents are looking to give memories, not ‘stuff’.

So, how do we ensure that opening a gift voucher gives our littlies a thrill? Let’s not forget that often, kids are just as enamored with the wrapping – and that special feeling that comes with being given a present – as they are with what’s inside. With a pinch of creativity, we can stir up their enthusiasm for an experience to come. Set them a challenge, play a game or give them something to treasure and watch their excitement grow.

Balloons or bust

Nothing says ‘celebration’ like balloons. And why give one when you can give a bunch? Invite your littlie to ‘pop’ their way through a bright balloon bouquet. Inside, they could find mini prizes, clues and the voucher. Or, use a DIY hot air balloon to present the voucher – simply use ribbon to attach a small basket to a balloon or a coloured rice paper shade.

Box it up

Get your bling on to pretty up an ordinary household container. Use paper, fabric, shells, beads or glitter to bedazzle a noodle or a takeaway box. Transform a mason jar by gluing a trinket to the lid (think figurines, Lego, even blocks) and coating in fluorescent paint. Or, make a glittery lid to create a ‘treasure bottle’ filled with shells, stones and feathers. Present the voucher within your chosen container and add anything you wish: trinkets, cellophane-wrapped baked goods, balloons, stickers or other treats.

For a cute alternative, create a ‘dream drink’. Take a cardboard milkshake cup or a large plastic cup with a flat or dome lid, fill with coloured tissue paper and top with ‘whipped cream’ cotton wool. Add a coloured straw and your voucher to boot.

Be crafty

There are plenty of other ways to tickle your little one’s fancy with inspired ‘wrapping’:

  1. Make an envelope from paper or felt and decorate on theme
  2. Use tissue paper or pompoms to make a garland, string your voucher on and hang above the munchkin’s bed
  3. Make a personalised bon-bon containing the voucher and other trinkets (or jokes!) – you can buy ‘bon-bon snaps’ for this purpose
  4. Jump online for an origami tutorial, fold yourself an animal and hide the voucher within
  5. Create an origami fortune teller with the ‘fortunes’ relating to the experience
  6. Thread a home-made necklace (with beads or hard candy) complete with a voucher ‘pendant’
  7. Convert a jar into a DIY snow globe (tutorial here at The Creative Mama) and theme at will

Party with a piñata

This Mexican party prop is now ubiquitous for one very good reason – kids love it so much, it’s like a gift in itself. So whether you buy or DIY, think theming. Giving music lessons? A guitar-shaped piñata! Sending them to in-line skating? Whip up a giant skate-shaped piñata (DIY instructions here at Oh Happy Day). Or, create an edible piñata – a hollowed-out cake that hides treats and the voucher.

Gift with a (mini) gift

If you’re open to including a small gift, delight your little one by attaching a relevant item. So, ballet shoes for your aspiring dancer, art supplies for your pint-sized Picasso, or a compass for your fledgling adventurer.

Embrace the chase

When we give an experience, we’re appealing to our little ones’ sense of adventure. So why not use the act of giving for the same? Here’s how:

  1. Stage a backyard treasure hunt complete with mini prizes and clues
  2. Recruit family and friends for ‘pass the parcel’ – each layer could contain a clue to the voucher inside
  3. Hide the voucher in a deck of playing cards and initiate a game

Choose their own adventure

Win over a little one early by having them choose their experience. Set a budget and parameters and jump online to grant their wish. Or, use the games mentioned above to present several (currently available) options, have them select their favourite and do the buying later.

Put your ingenuity into action and there’s no end to ways to thrill with a voucher. When you do, you’ll get as much from the giving as your little one does from the adventure that awaits.

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