I’ve perfected my paper thickness consistency and determined that a silkscreen frame is perfect for papermaking.
1. Crushed leaves. 2. Pressed flower petals. 3. Crushed stems and pressed petals. 4. Dried lavender. 5. Plain paper. 6. Blue paper pulp then green poured on top and mixed for marbling effect.
I was able to use the same batch of water but got these vibrant color changes just by adjusting how much colored cardstock scraps added. Small seeds or dried items are best mixed in with the paper pulp. For thicker paper, pressed flowers were added on top.
A few years ago when I got my paper die cut machine I realized early on that I had a lot of paper waste from the cut outs. I also had not used the best quality paper for paper die cutting. I wondered if the scraps would make good handmade paper. I stashed it all in a drawer and then in two boxes. I soon started watching videos on handmade paper making and came across “Paper Alice”. Watching this paper artist’s easy going manner took all of the fear out of my wanting to do this.
Next it was off to Goodwill for a used blender! Fast forward two years ….
A happenstance meeting, while attending a local library “Art in the Garden” with a local watercolor artist, set me off on my papermaking journey. My age in papermaking is a few days.
While finally organizing my scraps by size then color. Yes, I said “organizing my scraps”. Who does that? Well I did. I separated my scraps by those for word books, card making, and handmade papermaking. Next, I found a frame which I thought might make a good “deckle”. (They are usually two identical wooden frames with screening in between.) Since my frame did have a recessed perimeter all around on both sides I decided to make an aperture in a rectangular shape for the recessed area. Instead of screening I found non-sew interfacing cut to size works great.
- The used blender started leaking. The rubber gasket was too old and cracked. I used mine & bought a new one for home use.
- All of that hand tearing of paper scraps tired out my fingers. I took all the scraps to the shredder. Ahh. That was much better!
- I started out with a plastic canvas backing for support. Since it was taped on, after several dunkings it fell off.
I found in the end that since I could not find “stretcher bars”, a silkscreening frame worked great!
Finished handmade paper on silkscreen. A finished envelope.
Framed canvases work great too. I had to use a butter knife to pull out the staples.
I saw some great tutorials on paper bead making and thought I would give it a try. I used vintage print paper and typed words. I’m also experimenting with bracelet designs.
I made my own paper beading tool out of a bamboo skewer. I split it on one end then used vintage print paper to wrap the holding end. I then applied two coats of Modge Podge. The final coat will be varnished.
Next I rolled hundreds of tube paper beads. I thought it would be relaxing.
I really loved the colors. I used distress inks.
This year I studied a lot of burlap and earth tones so when I saw a tutorial on Christmas cards with a vintage look I thought I’d give it a try. I used Kraft paper, distressed inks, glitter and patterned paper. The best part was the origami paper folding.
Origami Christmas Tree Card: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13yFSs8mDvw&list=PL2R6L7NSm7KLJ0JT4Uk5gM2jmRC-MCtvp&index=21
A relative’s son recently graduated so I decided to make a card. This is a modified graduation card that I saw on the internet. I added a handmade tassel. Soo cute. Congratulations graduate!!
I’ve worked long and hard on my new passion. The more you learn, the more you realize there is to learn. My paper quality was bothering me. After much research, I discovered there were more choices of paper weight than what I was finding at this particular craft store. The hunt began. Meanwhile I decide to make up some Korean Drama Valentine cards for my online shop. I was so excited and stayed up many late nights making these cards perfect. I took more than an hour to set up my shop parameters because I was being very careful and didn’t want to make mistakes.
This card making journey has been two years in the making. At first I wanted a sturdy card base on which I could display my original cross stitch designs and maybe sell at craft shows. Well I think I spent a whole year just learning about the different card styles. The basics are bifold, quarter fold. Through internet research I discovered that there are many many more card styles. Wow. They have names like easel, twisted easel, scalloped, shutter, spinner, glider, push/pull, pop up. There are different weights of card stock too. There is plain, textured and glitter card stock. There is also designer paper which comes in 8.5″ X 11″ and 12″ x12″. Some of the 12″ X 12″ is even double sided. There are special glues and adhesives. There are special mounting tape, adhesive dots and strips and myriad of tape dispensers. I feel like Alice & I’ve fallen into Wonderland. There are scrap booking/ card making retreats. There are brand name companies which sell paper making products. There are even special inks! There are die punch machines, binders and punches. There are even software programs to go with the machines & free templates, and something called Svg. files. I’m hooked.
I decided to narrow down what style card I wanted, sizes and themes. I learned that custom sizes are not a problem because you can always make your own envelopes. After buying so many supplies that you have to create a special space then I decided I may as well make cards to sell. I also decided to save my paper scraps to reuse with a mold and deckle to make my OWN paper! Oh, did I mention I got a stamp making machine to form my own original stamps? I wanted everything of mine to be unique. Well it’s year two and I’m closer to opening an Etsy shop. I have about 30 different cards to make which includes at least five different themes. What have I done? I’m having a great time on this journey and I’ve been able to get help from online friends in critiquing my cards. Is this scary and new? Yep. Is it worth going forward to try something new? You bet! Have fun on your paper journey.