There are a lot of great wrapping options out there. Here are a few of my favorites:
Martha's eco gift wrap guide, including reused and biodegradable box fillers like nuts, popcorn, and evergreens.
Real Simple's Creative Wrapping Ideas. I have this image in my idea book, and have the perfect jump rope to use when I find the proper gift and recipient. This might also look cute using pages from a coloring book.
This website is devoted to the Japanese art of furoshiki, or using cloth to wrap gifts. Scarves, handkerchiefs, and vintage linens are also good fabric options to consider.
Eco-artware has a template for making a gift box from a cereal box.
I like the Santa Monica Big Blue Bus store's use of transit maps as wrapping paper. Other paper options could include old maps, lightweight wallpaper, sheet music or colorful ads from old magazines.
This list on Mom Advice on becoming a Wrap Superstar is truly inspired.
No green gift wrapping guide would be complete without Danny Seo. His book and blog are truly inspirational.
Wrapping, of course, is not always necessary. My "fave hostess gift" I gave this past holiday season to a few people was this set
A bread basket, dishtowel, beer bread mix, and a can of beer. Almost all of the components were for use by the recipient, or were recyclable.
Heck, even gifts aren't always necessary. There are tons of donation opportunities out there. I think one of the coolest gifts I received as a child was my adopted whale.
This is definitely a "green" post I have to end with a caveat. Despite all these great ideas, I still looooove me some gift wrap. And it is rarely of the post-consumer, recycled content variety. I read some articles this Christmas about people who minimized their energy usage during the year so they wouldn't feel as bad displaying Christmas lights. I guess I feel kind of the same way about paper. I do a lot of every day to minimize my paper usage, like only printing when necessary, using old print outs as scratch paper, double-sided copying, etc. Oh, and no lousy newspapers. Hopefully this affords me a few splurges every now and then.