3 Ways to Add Vintage Flair to Your Holiday Wrapping

Why not add a dash of vintage flair to your holiday wrapping? Mary Polityka Bush shared festive ways to wrap gifts in the Nov/Dec 2007 issue of Piecework.

Mary Polityka Bush Dec 23, 2019 - 4 min read

3 Ways to Add Vintage Flair to Your Holiday Wrapping Primary Image

Mary Polityka Bush’s Victorian cones. Each, 6 inches (15.2 cm) long including drop bead and 3 inches (7.6 cm) in diameter.

Why not add a dash of vintage flair to your holiday wrapping? PieceWork contributor Mary Polityka Bush originally shared two festive ways to wrap up a special gift in the November/December 2007 issue. Also included in the issue is Shirley Hansen’s trio of upcycled ornaments. Affix one to a package for an extra dose of holiday cheer.

1. Victorian Gift Cones

Make miniature fabric cones like those traditionally used to hold candy, nuts, potpourri, flowers, or small gifts to decorate a Christmas tree, as dinner party favors, or to hang on a drawer knob, doorknob, chair back, or bedpost any time of year. I fused heavyweight, nonwoven interfacing to the wrong sides of round vintage damask and whitework doilies, which I then cut into quarters. After embellishing these with snippets of trims, I folded the tip of each segment under ½ inch (1.3 cm), gently rolled the piece into a cone, and hand-sewed a seam up the back. I affixed either a faux crystal or a faux pearl drop bead (you could use tassels, bows with long streamers, or poufs of tulle instead) to each cone tip and finished the cones with satin ribbon or faux pearl handles and bows.

holiday wrapping

Mary Polityka Bush’s package adornments. Each, 3⅞ inches (9.8 cm) in diameter.

2. Package Adornments

Pretty textiles incorporated into the wrapping make even the smallest gift extra-special. I used Picture Frame Fobbies, a new product that replaces a bow on packages (visit for more information). I used a piece of crocheted lace along with embroideries from a handkerchief, a doily, and a sachet from my textile collection. I cut each fabric slightly larger than the 2-×-2-inch (5.1-×-5.1-cm) frame opening in the Fobbie, glued the edges of the fabric to the back of the Fobbie, and glued a 2½-inch (6.4-cm) square of felt over the back of the fabric. I threaded ribbon through the slots in the Fobbie and around the package. After the package has been unwrapped, you can tie a ribbon to one of the slots in the Fobbie and hang it as an ornament.

holiday wrapping

Shirley Hansen’s trio of ornaments. Green, 5 inches (12.7 cm) long; red, 4¾ x 4¾ inches (12.1 x 12.1 cm); pear shape, 5 inches (12.7 cm) long.

3. Three Ornaments

I like to make festive ornaments from scratch or recycle pieces of embroidery cut from objects that I no longer use. For the pear ornament, I cut out a small cross-stitched motif and placed it on a piece of overdyed wool felt cut into a pear shape. I covered the raw edges of the cutout with narrow gold trim, embroidered a stem and leaves with cotton embroidery floss and silk ribbon on the pear-shaped felt, and added a small green felt leaf. I partially stitched a second pear-shaped piece of felt to the front piece, stuffed it with fiberfill, added a silk cord for hanging, and completed the stitching. For the red ornament, I placed a small cross-stitched circle on a piece of whitework, which I stitched to moiré fabric and then added silk ribbon roses and beads. I stuffed the green ornament as I did the pear above, trimmed it with a strip of crocheted edging, and embellished it with silver thread and beads.