Featured: 48cm Isa Monyo Reversible Furoshiki | Japanese Apricot Red/Green Recently, the Guardian published an article on furoshiki that generated a lot of interest! We at Zusetsu whole-heartedly support the use of reusable fabric over un-recyclable wrapping paper for Christmas gift-wrapping. According to the Wildlife and Countryside Link (UK Environmental Conservation Policy Advocate), 'around 106 square km of wrapping paper are likely to be used in the UK this year  – approximately one fifth of this (19.2 square km), more than the combined size of all the Royal Parks in London could end up in landfill'. Furoshiki has a lot of great perks along with being an eco-friendly alternative to un-recyclable wrapping paper. So, we have put together a list of 5 reasons why you should use furoshiki this Christmas. Help us spread the word of furoshiki to your friends and family for a more eco-conscious and special Christmas!
What is Furoshiki?
Featured: Our Cohare Meadow Flower Series (Vivid Blue & Orange, Bright Pink & Yellow) A furoshiki is an almost square piece of cloth that is traditionally used to wrap, carry or protect items. It is folded in a manner similar to origami to create beautiful gift-wrapping and bags. You can use furoshiki as part of a gift, so the gift receiver can in turn reuse the furoshiki for their next gift-giving occasion, creating a cycle of giving. For more information on the Japanese cultural background, check our history of furoshiki page!
1. They are reusable
Furoshiki can be reused over and over again, which makes it a great eco-friendly alternative to the standard wrapping paper. According to Anthropology magazine Sapiens (shared to us by our friends at the Fabric Wrapping Co!), "wrapping paper is typically too light and inky for efficient recycling, and if it includes foil or plastic, many recyclers won't accept it". In contrast, the more you reuse a furoshiki, the softer and more malleable it becomes, which adds to the quality. As a furoshiki online store, here at Zusetsu we have had a few people approach us regarding furoshiki from an environmental perspective. Check these articles by Practical Green Life and Culture Whisperer which introduce furoshiki and other sustainable gift-wrapping ideas!
2. Easier to use than paper wrapping!
Featured: 70cm Hare Tsutsumi Furoshiki | Seven Treasures White Red A common misconception that we hear from those who have not used furoshiki yet is that it seems too complicated. We can assure you it isn't! Take a look at our simple gift wrap tutorial for a very quick and easy way to wrap your present elegantly in furoshiki :) The great advantage of furoshiki is that if you're unhappy with the way the wrap looks, it's very easy to re-start - all you have to do is untie the knot you made! This is in contrast to wrapping paper, where you're typically using tape or putting creases in the paper for the fold, so you tend to throw away the failed attempt paper and use a new sheet to start over. This can also get quite wasteful. Another great aspect of furoshiki is that it is really easy to wrap gifts of all shapes and sizes! Awkward non-rectangular shapes can be especially difficult to wrap using paper, but that is not a problem for furoshiki. Furoshiki are made in a wide range of sizes (we provide sizes from 48cm to 104cm), so you can use the one that matches your particular gift size.
Left: an elegant way to gift a wine bottle! (70cm Hare Tsutsumi Furoshiki | Pine Bamboo Plum Navy Blue) Right: cute bunny ears! (50cm Adeline Klam Organic Cotton Furoshiki | Peony Red)
3. Spectacular under the Christmas tree!
Here at Zusetsu we have been given some beautiful furoshiki by friends and family. Every Christmas we all dive into the furoshiki box to wrap our presents before putting them under the Christmas tree. With presents wrapped in different patterns and in different furoshiki styles, they look absolutely stunning.
Our four Hare Tsutsumi furoshiki wraps have a pearlescent shine that make them especially Christmassy - they shimmer under the twinkling fairy lights!
We love gift-wrapping with furoshiki. It's wonderful because instead of throwing out wrapping paper and plastic tape, we simply fold away our furoshiki until the next time we have something to celebrate!
4. A whole lot of fun!
Just like baking and origami, furoshiki wrapping is another home craft activity that took off this year! Here at Zusetsu we have noticed a surge of interest in this beautiful Japanese art form!
Furoshiki wrapping is a fun way to get creative at Christmas, and a nice activity to share with your family, children, or even your co-workers online!
Furoshiki wrapping is a relaxing home craft. It's a thoughtful way to wrap a gift, and you'll be delighted by how lovely your wraps look!
You can make all sorts of different styles - take a look at our Furoshiki Tutorials for inspiration :)
Here is a step-by-step diagram version of the bunny wrap from the photo above!
Check out our Instagram reels for more inspiration :)
5. Furoshiki creates lasting memories
When Yukki gifted a furoshiki-wrapped Japanese tea-pot to Cathy for her birthday!
When you receive a gift wrapped in furoshiki, the furoshiki is a lovely part of the present. A large furoshiki can be easily made into a furoshiki bag. A small furoshiki can become a hair tie or a book cover - there are all sorts of ways to re-use furoshiki.
Within a family or group of friends you can create a circle of giving, where you each use the furoshiki in turn, passing one to another. Or everyone can have their own unique furoshiki which are returned to them when the presents are all unwrapped!
In this way, furoshiki absorb memories of those close to us. We think of them when we wrap a gift with a furoshiki that we've been given. It's a different way of approaching giving, and one that has a lot of meaning attached to it - it's simply enchanting!
Are you ready to get furoshiki-wrapping?
We hope you enjoyed our list! If you like to learn more about furoshiki and the different styles of wraps you can make, do take a look at our furoshiki tutorials page! Please share your furoshiki-wrapped gift photos with us - we would love to see them!! :)
Merry Christmas from the Zusetsu Team x