Printable Wrapping Paper: 9 Festive Designs from Special Collections

December 14, 2020 | Nicole

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Photograph of three gifts wrapped with paper from TPL's Special Collections

Did you know Toronto Public Library has a huge collection of digitized books and ephemera, including commercial catalogues and greeting cards? You'll find 170,000+ of these rare and historical items on our Digital Archive — no library card needed. It is an incredible resource for artists, designers and DIYers looking for inspiration. 

We transformed nine digitized items into festive wrapping paper that you can print at home. Save yourself a non-essential trip to buy gift wrap and share a piece of our Special Collections with your loved ones this holiday season.

The images below link to the PDFs to download the wrapping paper.

Happy wrapping! 


Snow Birds

Designs based on Snow Bird (Plate 13) by John James Audubon (1785–1851), 1827. View original in Digital Archive.

John James Audubon’s Birds of America is one of TPL’s greatest treasures: the rare double-elephant folio edition is one of only five copies in Canada. 

Repeating design of two different small birds on thin branches

Download Audubon Snow Birds 1 | PDF


Pattern repeat of a snowbird on branch arranged into a spiral. Background of small dots.

Download Audubon Snow Birds 2 | PDF 


Gloves & Mitts For Sale

Design based on Simpson's Catalogue Fall and Winter 1918-19page 111: Children's and Infants Gloves and Mittens. View original on Digital Archive

Founded by Robert Simpson, Simpson's was a prominent Canadian department store for 85 years. The first Simpson's catalogue was published in 1893 and its flagship store at Queen and Yonge Street opened in 1894. Simpson's successful mail order division grew and flourished in the first decades of the 20th century and was purchased by American retail giant Sears in 1951. 

Open catalogue page spread showing dozens of pairs of gloves and mittens. Descriptions and prices below.

Download Simpsons Mittens | PDF


Snow Storms

Designs based on Snow Dogs ["Servant and Dogs of St. Bernard on Duty," page 12) and Snow Crystals [page 56/57], illustrations from "The Snow-storm, or, An account of the nature, properties, dangers, and uses of snow in various parts of the world" by Charles Tomlinson (1808–1897). London: Printed for the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1852. View original on Digital Archive.

British scientist Tomlinson published this fascinating illustrated account of all things snow in 1852. Tomlinson includes a detailed account of the five "classes" of snowflake formations based on the Arctic research of Rev. Dr. William Scoresby. The book also features the Canadian poem, "Sleigh Bells" by Susanna Moodie on page 77. 

Pattern repeat of frontispiece illustration of man with walking stick walking through snow with two dogs.

Download Snow Dogs | PDF


Pattern repeat of illustrated snow crystals on light background.

Download Snow Crystals Light Background | PDF


Pattern repeat of illustrated snow crystals on dark background.

Download Snow Crystals Dark Background | PDF


Loved Ones

Design from two postcards reading, "To the loved ones at home", 1909 (top) and 1910 (bottom). View originals on Digital Archive.

Pattern repeat of "To the loved ones at home". Words surrounded by green ivy and red flowers.

Download To The Loved Ones at Home | PDF


Pattern repeat of words "To the loved ones at home." Words surrounded by blue flowers and ivy and a harp.

Download Golden To The Loved Ones at Home | PDF 


Snowman & Skating

Design from two postcards, 1910. View originals on Digital Archive: skating postcard and snowman postcard.

Repeating design of two postcards of girls playing in snow with Christmas me

Download Snowman and Skating Cards | PDF



More from TPL

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Design credit for all wrapping papers: Katie Muth.