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Making Your Own Handmade Cardstock

Guest Author - Michelle McVaney

Do you like the look of textured cardstocks? Sometimes it is hard to find a good texture. A great way to use up some of the scraps you have piling up is to make your very own textured paper! There are a few steps to follow, but the end result will leave you with a very nice textured cardstock that will add beautiful dimension to your layouts.

When you are creating your own custom cardstock you can choose your own colors as well. A variegated cardstock is something that you canít just go out and buy at the store, but you can certainly make your own! You could mix several colors of pink to create a pink variegated look. For more variety, you could mix light and dark versions off the same color or even different colors. Some colors may not come out as expected. Sometimes deep colors will even bleed. Experimenting is all part of the fun of making your own cardstock! You can add patterned paper scraps as well.

Once you have decided what colors you are going to use the fun begins! Tear your cardstock scraps into small one inch square pieces. The pieces do not have to be precise, just start tearing- any small pieces will work. They donít even have to be square. I always get my kids in on the action, they love to tear things!

The next step in making your own cardstock is to get out your kitchen blender! Yes, I am serious! Fill your blender up until it is about 3 inches full of the scrap paper pieces. Add enough water to soak the pieces. Next, pulverize the paper until you get the texture that you want. The more you blend the paper, the more you break up the cardstock. For a more textured look, keep some of the cardstock pieces in tack. I sometimes add some extra toward the end of the blending process if it has gotten a little too smooth.

Once you have your mixture at the desired consistency it is time to pour it into a cookie sheet and spread the concoction with your fingers. Here lately I have been really enjoying making a mess! The thinner the mixture, the weaker the paper will be when dry. You might want to think about your projects before deciding your thickness. If you are going to be using punches, you might want a little thinner paper.

Soak up the excess liquid with a paper towel. Sit the cooki
e sheet in a warm area where it can dry. Sometimes I even put a fan blowing to help circulate the air and speed up the drying time. You could probably also use a heat gun, but I have not tried this. Just be careful not to hold the gun too close and burn your new paper!

When the mixture is completely dry it should lift off the cookie sheet in one piece. Sometimes I use a flipper to help loosen it up if it is stuck to the pan a little. Make sure to store your new textured, handmade cardstock somewhere that it will not be broken. I all of my handmade papers in a special box. Some of the more delicate ones I slip inside a page protector to keep them intact inside the box.

I have made brown cardstock to use as tree bark. Black handmade cardstock for roads, and blue for water. A light brown or tan works great for sand, and green makes beautiful realistic leaves!. This cardstock really adds great dimension to your pages.

Get out your blender and gather up those scraps! While you are there making the mess, you might as well make several sheets so that you will have some of this yummy handmade paper for several future projects!
There are a few steps to follow, but the end result will leave you with me very nice textured cardstock that will add beautiful dimension to your layouts.

When you are creating your own custom cardstock you can choose your own colors as well. A variegated cardstock is something that you canít just go out and buy at the store, but you can certainly make your own! You could mix several colors of pink to create a pink variegated look. For more variety, you could mix light and dark versions off the same color or even different colors. Some colors may not come out as expected. Sometimes deep colors will even bleed. Experimenting is all part of the fun of making your own cardstock! You can add patterned paper scraps as well.

Once you have decided what colors you are going to use the fun begins! Tear your cardstock scraps into small one inch square pieces. The pieces do not have to be precise, just start tearing- any small pieces will work. They donít even have to be square. I always get my kids in on the action, they love to tear things!

The next step in making your own cardstock is to get out your kitchen blender! Yes, I am serious! Fill your blender up until it is about 3 inches full of the scrap paper pieces. Add enough water to soak the pieces. Next, pulverize the paper until you get the texture that you want. The more you blend the paper, the more you break up the cardstock. For a more textured look, keep some of the cardstock pieces in tack. I sometimes add some extra toward the end of the blending process if it has gotten a little too smooth.
Once you have your mixture at the desired consistency it is time to pour it into a cookie sheet and spread the concoction with your fingers. Here lately I have been really enjoying making a mess! The thinner the mixture, the weaker the paper will be when dry. You might want to think about your projects before deciding your thickness. If you are going to be using punches, you might want a little thinner paper.

Soak up the excess liquid with a paper towel. Sit the cookie sheet in a warm area where it can dry. Sometimes I even put a fan blowing to help circulate the air and speed up the drying time. You could probably also use a heat gun, but I have not tried this. Just be careful not to hold the gun too close and burn your new paper!

When the mixture is completely dry it should lift off the cookie sheet in one piece. Sometimes I use a flipper to help loosen it up if it is stuck to the pan a little. Make sure to store your new textured, handmade cardstock somewhere that it will not be broken. I all of my handmade papers in a special box. Some of the more delicate ones I slip inside a page protector to keep them intact inside the box.

I have made brown cardstock to use as tree bark. Black handmade cardstock for roads, and blue for water. A light brown or tan works great for sand, and green makes beautiful realistic leaves!. This cardstock really adds great dimension to your pages.

Get out your blender and gather up those scraps! While you are there making the mess, you might as well make several sheets so that you will have some of this yummy handmade paper for several future projects!
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Content copyright © 2014 by Michelle McVaney. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Michelle McVaney. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Kathleen Rensel for details.

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