Why Will There Be Free Wrapping Paper in Sunday's NY Times?

©. Left: Erin Brown/Unsplash | Right: Love Beauty and Planet

For the Sunday, December 8 issue, a centerspread ad has been designed as a piece of planet-friendly wrapping paper.

I have started this introduction eight different times, and each one sounds sooo "bah humbug" – but this is supposed to be a happy story! So I will let these numbers cited by Stanford University do the dirty work for me:

"Americans throw away 25% more trash during the Thanksgiving to New Year's holiday period than any other time of year. The extra waste amounts to 25 million tons of garbage, or about 1 million extra tons per week!"

Among other horrifying examples of waste, Stanford notes:

If every American family wrapped just 3 presents in re-used materials, it would save enough paper to cover 45,000 football fields.

Which is where a super sweet campaign by eco-friendly beauty company Love Beauty and Planet comes into the picture. The company has taken out a centerspread ad in the December 8th Sunday issue of The New York Times and turned it into a decorative wonderland that "readers can reuse as planet-friendly wrapping paper to urge gift-givers to rethink their holiday waste."

wrapping paper

© Love Beauty and Planet


© Love Beauty and Planet

The design was created in partnership with illustrator Leah Duncan, and inspired by "our shared love for the planet and the small acts each of us can do to help make it cleaner, greener and more beautiful," says the company.

And while, yes, it is an ad ... it is also a great reminder that there are many alternative ways to swathe one's presents that don't involve generating heaps of new trash. Use this sweet sheet of newspaper, for starters ... before you know it you might be using more of the newspaper as well, or shopping bags, magazine pages, old cards, fabric, outdated calendar pages, what have you ... if there is paper to be thrown away, consider in a new light as potential wrapping paper.

The Love Beauty and Planet wrapping paper will be available exclusively in the Main News section of The Times, in both local and national editions.