This Literary Wrapping Paper Will Take Your Holiday Gifts to the Next Level

The holiday season is officially underway, and you know what that means—it’s almost time to start wrapping presents. To make the process a little less painful, I usually combine the activity with two of my favorite things: wine (so I don’t spiral into a procrastination-induced panic), and festive music. But this year, I’m stepping up my gift wrapping with another item: adorable bookish wrapping paper.

There’s no better way to make your presents look great (and make the act of wrapping presents more fun) than to use some stylish wrapping paper. And although I like snowman-patterned or red, green, and gold paper as much as the next person, this literary-themed paper just speaks to my book-lovin’ heart. Plus, it’s perfect for any gifts to fellow readers, whether that be friends, family, or members of your book club.

The one catch: This specialty book wrapping paper isn’t as readily available at local pharmacies as the conventional kind. So where can you find it? Read on for some cute and festive options!

Zazzle has some great choices, including this two-toned “Once Upon a Time” gift wrap that will appeal to any fairy tale fans.

The Literary Gift Company is also a great site to scour for bookish items, for obvious reasons. It has a lot of festive wrapping paper perfect for avid readers, but my personal favorite is this one featuring various vintage typewriters:

This Literary Life package from Amazon sticks with the bookish motif and comes with 12 sheets of wrapping paper, along with 24 gift tags:

Give your presents an antique feel with this matte craft paper from the Etsy shop, SoChroma.

Have any superhero fans in your life? Wrap their gifts with this wrapping paper that pays homage to some classic comic book sayings, from PartyEleganza on Etsy:

Prefer to stick to solid-colored wrapping paper? No problem—you can add a little bookish magic with this tape from Etsy’s ColourSplashSupplies store:

Last but not least, you can simply download this printable Word Search paper from Something Turquoise. The best part? It’s customizable, so you can include the gift recipient’s name or any other words you wish to feature.

Happy wrapping!

By , December 
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Do Good: 12 Literary Nonprofits to Support This Holiday

Asian American Writers’ Workshop

Established in 1991, the Asian American Writers’ Workshop is a national not-for-profit arts organization devoted to creating, publishing, and developing creative writing by Asian Americans. Since 2010, the group has committed to giving away more than $100,000 to emerging Asian American writers. Its online magazine, The Margins, has attracted more than half a million visitors. The AAWW also hosts events featuring hundreds of writers a year, with Maxine Hong Kingston and Chang-rae Lee among the luminaries.

Find out more »
Donate »

Barbershop Books

Barbershop Books is a community-based literacy program that creates friendly reading spaces in barbershops for boys. The nonprofit’s mission is to help black boys between the ages of four and eight become readers by bringing books into barbershops—and involving the men who work there to help foster a love of reading. Every dollar invested in a reading space results in 27 minutes of reading in a barbershop. Find out more about the program’s impact as well as how you can get involved.

Learn more »
Donate »

Books Through Bars

Based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the volunteer-run nonprofit organization Books Through Bars distributes free books to incarcerated people in the states of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, and West Virginia. Each week, the organization receives hundreds of letters from prisoners requesting books. And every year Books Through Bars sends more than 8,000 packages of books.

Learn more »
Donate »

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

In 1995, country singer Dolly Parton started the nonprofit Imagination Library to promote reading in her home state of Tennessee. Today the group has donated millions of books to children in need throughout the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom. Every month the Imagination Library mails more than 1 million books to children’s homes, and in February the nonprofit sent its 100 millionth book. Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library partners with local communities; if your community would like to get involved, learn more here.

Get Involved»
Donate »

Girls Write Now

Celebrating its 20th year, the nonprofit Girls Write Now is a community of women writers from ages 13 to 83. The group matches girls with professional women writers to work on portfolios and readings as well as provides writing workshops and college preparation. The New York City-based organization accepts donations and is seeking mentorsmentees, and people to join its team. “We take girls seriously for who they are as well as who they will become,” the group says. “The relationships we foster tear down stereotypes, building a community of women writers of all ages who work to inspire and support one another with every pair session, every reading, and every workshop.”

Find out more »
Get involved»
Donate »

International Literacy Association

The International Literacy Association is a global nonprofit organization of more than 300,000 educators, researchers, and experts across 78 countries. Its mission is to make literacy accessible for all. ILA collaborates with its partners to develop, gather, and disseminate high-quality resources, best practices, and cutting-edge research to empower educators, inspire students, and inform policymakers.

Find out more »
Donate »

Lambda Literary

The nonprofit Lambda Literary believes “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer literature is fundamental to the preservation of our culture and that LGBTQ lives are affirmed when our stories are written, published, and read.” The group traces its beginnings back to 1987, when L. Page Maccubbin, owner of Lambda Rising Bookstore in Washington, D.C., published the first Lambda Book Report. The Lambda Literary Awards, or “Lammys,” followed in 1989. Then in 2007, the group founded its Writers Retreat for Emerging LGBTQ Voices, a residency designed to offer intensive and sophisticated instruction to select writers over a one-week period. Lambda Literary accepts donations to sustain all of its programs.

Find out more »
Donate »

Learning Ally

The nonprofit Learning Ally uses educational technology to assist struggling readers who have learning differences and visual disabilities. Its cloud-based library of narrated audio textbooks and popular literature—all voiced by volunteers—gives these students access to grade-level content so they can become successful, engaged learners alongside their peers. Working with schools across the U.S., Learning Ally provides teachers with tools, training, and support to help students.

Get Involved»
Donate »

Little Free Library

Painted red and shaped like a miniature one-room schoolhouse in honor of his schoolteacher mother, the first Little Free Library—built by Todd Bol in Hudson, Wisconsin, in 2009—launched what would become a worldwide movement. Just nine years later, more than 75,000 such “Little Free Libraries” dot the globe in all 50 U.S. states and in 88 countries. Often custom painted by local artists, these tiny book collections are outfitted with the cheerful motto “Take a book, return a book!” Believing that no one should have to live in a book desert, the nonprofit Little Free Library needs donations to keep the movement going. Find out how you can help place a Little Free Library in your hometown and in cities across the globe. You can also get involved by becoming the “steward” of your own library by ordering one ready-made or designing your own!

Learn more »
Donate »

National Novel Writing Month

Each November means something special in the writing community: It’s time for National Novel Writing Month (aka NaNoWriMo). The basic challenge is to write 50,000 words of a rough draft in the month of November, but NaNoWriMo is so much more than that. The organization provides the structure, community, and guidance necessary to help people find their voices and develop the tools and discipline necessary to build writing mastery. Its programs extend beyond November and go year-round to help people get from the first draft to the last draft and provide opportunities for all ages to participate in a literary community on local and global levels.

Learn more »
Donate »

We Need Diverse Books

We Need Diverse Books is a grassroots nonprofit program that is run by children’s book lovers and aims to increase the diversity of books available to young readers. The group works to promote literature featuring children’s book characters who are from diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, religious, indigenous, LGBTQ, and other minority communities. We Need Diverse Books was spearheaded by author Ellen Oh and 21 other children’s book writers and industry professionals. The group was founded on the belief that more diversity in children’s books better reflects the world and teaches kids about our differences as well as our shared feelings and aspirations.

Find out more »
Become a fund-raiser »
Volunteer »

 

Words Without Borders

Founded in 2003, Words Without Borders is an organization that promotes cultural understanding through the translation and publication of contemporary international literature. Every month the group publishes 8 to 12 new works by international writers, including Nobel Prize laureates and new writers. To date, Words Without Borders has published more than 2,400 pieces from 132 countries and 112 languages. In 2014, it also began an education program that provides educators with resources to incorporate contemporary international literature into their classes.

Find out more »
Get involved»
Donate »

By Cybil, December 02, 2018, first appearing on Goodreads Blog

MPL DITTOS: Dunkirk

Dunkirk Shelf End Ditto NU

For those that need a break from holiday merriment… in favor of grim, WWII drama.

SHARE 10 BOOKISH STOCKING STUFFERS FOR YOUR FAVOURITE READER

I don’t know if you’re the kind of person who thinks about love languages, but I am. One of my main love languages is gift giving. I love selecting (or making) the perfect gifts for my loved ones. Something I know they’re really going to love. While it might be stressful to try to get something perfect for everyone all at once, it can still be a fun experience. Especially since the advent of online shopping. If you’re scouring the internet to find stocking stuffers that your beloved reader might actually love and use, let me help you. Here are 10 adorable bookish stocking stuffers, all under $20.

Reading in the cafe candle from Frostbeard Studio

Adorable Harry Potter bookmark from Otter Nonsense Designs

Emma art print from Folio Creations

Night Court soap from The Soap Librarian

398.2 Dewey Decimal fairytale earrings from Harry’s Suitcase

Bookstagram enamel pin from Blooming Library

Book Hangover mug from Stag and Peach Co.

Thornfield Grounds Jane Eyre wax melts from Literary Lustre

Butter Beer tea from Becca’s Little Boutique

Doors of Durin Lord of the Rings enamel pin from the Grumpy Unicorn Co.

By , December 

25 LITERARY TEA GIFTS AND ACCESSORIES FOR THE BOOKISH TEA LOVERS IN YOUR LIFE

It is a truth universally acknowledged that bibliophiles love hot beverages, so give the gift of literary tea to the bookworm in your life. Looking for a special blend inspired by your best friend’s favorite author? A bookish tea infuser for your teacher? The perfect punny novel-tea tin for yourself? No matter the occasion, we’ve got you covered with these 25 literary teas, gift sets, and accessories.

Click on the picture or the link below it to be connected to the Etsy shop or website where these literary tea gifts are sold.

25 Literary Tea Gifts and Accessories

LITERARY TEA GIFT SETS – TEA INSPIRED BY YOUR FAVORITE BOOKS AND AUTHORS

A Christmas CarolTwas the Night Before ChristmasThe Winter’s TaleThe Nutcracker—choose two of four Christmas stories for this literary tea gift set, each tea blended to complement the corresponding tale.

Christmas literary tea gift set

The Christmas Literary Tea Gift Set by LiteraryTeaCompany

Know your tea-lover’s favorite classic author? Buy them a blend inspired by that writer in a cute collectible tin featuring a quote from their work. Choose from 48 authors and poets ranging from A.A. Milne to William Wordsworth. You can also choose two and have them packed in a gift bag!

literary teas for different authors

Literary Teas – 48 Authors and Poets to Choose From by RosieLeaTeaUK

If you don’t know which author to pick, why not go for this literary tea sampler? It comes with ten different teas blended for ten different authors, including Maya Angelou, Frederick Douglass, and Beatrix Potter. You can read more about each blend on the company’s website!

literary tea gift set sampler from simpson and vail

Literary Tea Sampler Gift by Simpson & Vail

Dive back into Regency England with this Jane Austen literary tea gift set. Enjoy a sampling of earl grey, Darjeeling, lemon ginger, and jasmine tea, all stored in collectible tins that come gift-wrapped in a cloth bag and fancy purple box.

four Jane Austen-themed tea tins

Jane Austen Organic Tea Tins Gift Boxed Set by FavorFavour

The Picture of Earl Grey, War and Peach, Don Quixotea—the Man of la ManChai—these bookish tea tins are both the classiest and the punniest thing ever. (They also have Pride and Peppermint, Oliver Lemon Twist, Matcha Do About Nothing, Anise in Wonderland…)

book-shaped tea tins

Original NovelTea Tins by NovelTeas

“To thine own self be true” and order a set of these Shakespearean tea bags.

tea bags with Shakespeare quotes

Shakespeare Tea Gift Set by victoriamaedesigns

Each of these “Novel Teas” has a quote from a modern American classic like The Invisible ManThe Bell Jar, and To Kill a Mockingbird. (The tea is English breakfast, though.)

literary tea gift set with modern American classics on package

Novel Tea English Breakfast Gift Set by BagLadiesTea

Weasley’s Christmas Morning, Hogsmeade Christmas Village, Yule Ball Brew—this bookish Harry Potter tea is just what you need to get cozy this winter.

three pouches of Harry Potter themed tea

Hogwarts Christmas Collection Looseleaf Tea by Wolfdor

For a great year-round gift for the Potterhead in your life, check out this literary tea gift set inspired by potions and magical cures from Harry Potter. Dragon’s Blood is fruity and floral, Felix Felicis is a sweet black tea, Phoenix Tears is a caramel rooibos, and Wolfsbane is Japanese sencha.

Harry Potter themed literary tea gift

Tea Potions Harry Potter Inspired Tea Magic Gift by LiteraryTeaCompany

Join the Mad Hatter’s tea party with this adorable Alice in Wonderland-themed literary tea gift set. Each contains six mini book boxes with two tea bags in each.

Alice in Wonderland-themed literary tea gift set

Alice in Wonderland Tea Gift by FavorFavour

Middle-Earth is a land of all creatures, so this Tolkien-inspired tea is a drink of many flavors: a fruity blend of apple, rosehip, kiwi, strawberry, and hibiscus.

Literary tea gift inspired by Tolkien

Middle-Earth Tolkien Literary Tea by BookAndNook

If you can’t decide what to get the bookish tea-lover in your life, give them a “novel-tea” blind date with a book! This gift set comes with a surprise vintage novel, a bookmark, and a tea bag. Because it’s a surprise, this also makes a great gift to buy for yourself! You can even specify your preferred genre or flavor of tea.

blind date with a book plus tea bag

Novel-Tea Date with a Book Lite Tea Gift by CraftingKates

LITERARY TEA ACCESSORIES

Make every tea party a mad tea party with this Alice in Wonderland-inspired tea infuser.

Mad Hatter inspired literary tea infuser

Mad Hatter’s Inspired Tea infuser by LiteraryTeaCompany

Each of these vintage tea spoons is hand-stamped with a reminder of the important things in life: tea, books, and happiness.

vintage tea spoon stamped with the phrase drink tea read book be happy

Drink Tea Read Books Be Happy Tea Spoon by billetsdoux

Let this Harry Potter-inspired grim tea spoon rest be both a memento mori and a convenient way to avoid dripping all over your book.

grim tea spoon rest

Chances Looking Grim Wizard Tea Spoon Rest by InfiniTeasandBeyond

If the Grim is too, well, grim for your taste, how about this sweet “Mis-tea Mountains” spoon rest inspired by Tolkien’s Middle-Earth?

tea spoon rest with a painting of the "Mis-Tea" Mountains

Lord of the Rings Mis-tea Mountains Tea Bag Tidy by madebymegane

This gorgeous hand-painted teapot is perfect for book club.

hand-painted porcelain teapot with bookshelves and hanging plants

Book-A-Holic Hand-painted Porcelain Teapot by roootreee

And if you’ve got the teapot, you need the literary teacup and saucer to go with it.

literary teacup and saucer with book pattern

Book Lovers Breakfast Tea Cup and Saucer Set Fine Bone China by Roy Kirkham

If you’re more of a mug person, one with this C.S. Lewis quote is perfect for bookish tea lovers: “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”

mug with C.S. Lewis quote

C.S. Lewis Quote Mug by DesignsKepiDomestic

Break out these vintage library card coasters at your next tea party. Four designs include The Great GatsbyPride and PrejudiceAlice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and Great Expectations.

coasters with vintage library card designs

Vintage Library Card Coasters by iGotCrafts

Set the mood at your tea party with this Mad Hatter candle that smells like cucumber sandwiches, earl grey, and shortbread.

Mad Hatter's tea party candle

The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party Soy Wax Candle by ReadingRoomCandleCo

TAKE YOUR LITERARY TEA LOVE ON THE GO

Bring your favorite blend to book club with this tea wallet. Holds four tea bags.

tea wallets made with bookshelf-print fabric

Bookshelf Tea Wallet by DriSewing

Protect your books with this teacup-patterned book sleeve. Comes in three sizes.

book sleeve with teacup patterned fabric

Tea Cup Book Sleeve with Closure by FabricBound

Show off your love of tea and books with this adorable enamel pin.

teacup on a stack of books enamel pin

Tea and Book Lovers Enamel Pin by infiniteANDdarling

And to finish it all off, you need a tote bag to carry all of these literary tea goodies around (or, er, give them to your friend). This one has a quote from Peter Pan: “Would you like an adventure now, or would you like to have your tea first?”

tote bag with a tea cup image and quote from peter pan

Literary Tote Bag with Peter Pan Quote and Vintage Tea Cup by JaneAustenAndCompany

By , December 

15 PAWSITIVELY PERFECT GIFTS FOR BOOK-LOVING DOGS AND CATS

My dogs have holiday expectations. For Thanksgiving they anticipate leftovers. They want turkey and sweet potatoes, and they know if they wait patiently beside my grandma a little dessert might slip their way too. For Christmas their presumptions deepen– they’ve smelled those stockings for weeks, and they know there’s something delicious hidden inside.

Of course, we’ve had some holiday mishaps too– a living bird brought in by the cat on Christmas; my dog pulling down the turkey carcass on Thanksgiving, and my mom wrestling it away from her– these things happen, but if we keep our pets happy and healthy during the holidays, these little setbacks can be avoided.

I have two book- loving dogs; in fact, they love books so much they eat them:

picture-of-books-destroyed-by-dogs

My dogs obviously love to chew-up books, so I thought I’d better find them books that were chewable.

Do your dogs/cats also love to chew on books? Do they like to curl up in your nap while you read? Do you think your cat would love a Jane Austen- style hat? And your dog would love a Sailor Moon snood (a snood is an infinity scarf for dogs)? Well, I might have found a few perfect gift options for your pet!

HERE ARE 15 PAWSITIVELY PERFECT GIFTS FOR BOOK-LOVING DOGS:

 

picture-of-teachers-pet-book-stack

Teacher’s Pet Book Stack, Bark Shop, $10

picture- of-elephant-piggie-catnip-toy

Elephant & Piggie Catnip toy, Charlie’s Toy Box, $6.75

picture-of-not-all-who-wander-are-lost-cat-tags

“Not all who wander are lost” J.R.R. Tolkein quote cat tags, Firefly Lane Stamping, $17

picture-of-dog-poop-bags

Superhero dog poop bags, Crafted Geek, $8

WARNING: your cat will hate you for this–

picture-of-jane-austen-cat-hat

Jane Austen cat hat, Patrikka, $25

picture-of-adventure-time-dog-leash

Adventure Time dog leashes, Dog Collar Boutique, $17.99

picture-of-harry-potter-dog-tags

Harry Potter Muggle dog tags, Shop Lemon Tree, $16.99

picture-of-harry-potter-house-dog-tags

Harry Potter House dog collar, Adorkable Boutique, $13.99

picture-of-superhero-dog-bandana

Superhero dog bandana, Wooflings, $9

picture-of-one-ring-puppy-collar

One Ring to Rule them All puppy collar, Dotties Pet Boutique, $22.90

picture-of-slytherin-dog-bowtie

Slytherin Dog Bowtie, DressedtotheK9, $9

picture-pf-sailor-moon-dog-snood

Sailor Moon Dog Snood, The Gallant Greyhound, $24.50

picture-of-charlie-brown-dog-bandana

Charlie Brown Dog Bandana, GoldenDogCo, $10

picture-of-the-grinch-dog-toy

Young Grinch for Dogs, Bark Shop, $10

picture-of-gryffindor-pet-collar-charm

Gryffindor Pet Collar Charm, AshleyHayDesign, $10

By , November 

Wish List for Readers

Grant Snider. New York Times Book Review: Sketchbook, 11/30/18

We completely understand. But don’t forget that you can find many of those at the library for free.