About the contest:

  • Eight finalists wrapped odd-shaped gifts in three rounds during the contest:
    • Round 1: toy castle and a boxed gift
    • Round 2: children’s go-kart
    • Round 3: full-size paddleboat with a canopy
  • The contestants were judged on two criteria: appearance of the wrapped gifts and the technique used to wrap the gifts. In the event of a tie, speed was the determining factor.
  • Zapata, along with seven other gifted wrappers, was selected to participate in the contest based on a brief entry video and gift-wrapping tip that illustrated her talent and experience in the art of gift wrapping.

 About the first runner-up and other contestants:

  • The first runner-up, Melinda Cantor from Deer Park, N.Y., received a $2,500 cash prize. Cantor owns Only You Gifts in Islip, N.Y.
  • The following six contestants also received smaller cash prizes:
    • Mia Canada from Atlanta, Ga. of That’s a Wrap!
    • Diane Henkler from Lansdale, Pa.
    • Lisa Huff Kroll from Monrovia, Calif.
    • Vickie Ransbottom from Dallas, Ga.
    • Julia Rose from North Richland, Texas
    • Esther Thiel from Chesterfield, Mo.

About the judging panel:

  • The judging panel consisted of three gift wrapping experts:
    • Martin Amado, bilingual home and lifestyle expert
    • Erica Domesek, founder of the DIY Lifestyle brand P.S. I made this…
    • Mark Ski, former producer for Martha Stewart Living

“I was particularly impressed with Zapata’s creative use of embellishments and how she applied the various colors and patterns of Scotch Expressions Tapes to make an amazing wrap,” says contest judge Erica Domesek.  “Zapata’s wraps are a great example of how creative nostalgia and stylistic personalization touches can influence gift wrap trends with homemade gift wrap paper and embellishments.”

Zapata offers these DIY gift wrap tips to get creative this holiday season:   

  • Chalk it up: Search the Internet for printable chalkboard gift wrap. With just a chalk marker, send your recipient personalized greetings alongside drawings of reindeer and holiday trees.
  • Cut through the red tape: Who says you have to wrap a gift using paper and ribbon? Instead, add layers of colorful Scotch Expressions Tapes around a solid-colored box to create stripes and imitate a ribbon. Complete the look by folding individual pieces of colored and patterned tapes into triangles, and then tape them together to create a 3-D bow atop the gift.
  • A family affair: Give kids pieces of kraft paper pre-cut for individual gifts, and a variety of crayons and markers. Let their creativity take over! The wrap becomes part of the gift, as the ‘work of art’ can be framed by the recipient once they unwrap the present.
  • Smile! You’re on… gift wrap: Print black-and-white photos of family and friends, and tape them to gifts wrapped in bright-colored solid gift-wrap paper. The photos can serve as gift tags so the recipient can be easily identified.
  • Flower Power: Cut card stock into petal shapes and adhere them to your gift in the shape of a flower. Then, use complementary colored and patterned tapes to embellish the petals and illustrate the flower stem. Add additional petals directly on the box as a finishing touch.

Twittercue: .@Patricia_Zapata wins $10k in @ScotchProducts #MostGiftedWrapper Contest! http://bit.ly/hSSgho #giftwrap #tape #holidays