Japan’s Wrap Attack: Reduce Waste With the ‘Mottainai’ Furoshiki (TreeHugger)
The Japanese “furoshiki,” or “cloth for the bath,” was first used in the 14th century as a way to wrap one’s clothes while taking a public bath. Over the years, its uses were limited only by imagination and technique. That is, until the plastic bag went big in Japan (and everywhere). As Yuriko Koike, Japan’s Minister of the Environment points out, this seems like a pretty good time to bring wrap back on a global scale. It’s reusable, durable and versatile–and it makes wrapping and carrying stuff a heck of a lot more stylish than your typical sack of polyethylene.
Check out this web store which has a nice selection of Furoshiki and an instruction page. And I use this Furoshiki for my laptop. You could wrap a present for your friend in a Furoshiki instead of using wrapping paper. Maybe add a print-out of this instruction page so they know what to do. I became more familiar with Furoshiki from doing Oryoki, where the bowls are wrapped in a cloth.