Category Archives: How to Make Paper

Articles covering how to make papers.

Papermaking for Preschoolers

Making paper is an excellent lesson for almost any age. While the project can easily be conducted within a middle school classroom–and may even get easier as the age of the student gets higher up to high school and college levels–some may balk at the idea of making paper with preschool children.

Preschoolers, after all, have shorter attention spans. Continue reading

Keeping Safety in Mind While Making Paper

Making paper is considered a very safe and enjoyable activity. However, like any craft, there are some dangers that can always be present. It’s important to take precautions before embarking on any new activity. Here are a few tips to do that when making paper.

Use caution when handling your screen. Remember, it’s made of wire and can cause a cut. If you make your own screen, you might even wish to wear protective work gloves until its edges are finished. Continue reading

Homemade Paper to Localize Economy?

From pilfering hotel shampoo bottles to using single squares of toilet paper at a time, we’ve all heard some pretty interesting, creative, and sometimes slightly unhinged ways to save money these days. At The Daily Green, handmade paper is considered one of many ways to re-localize the economy and go green.

They recently featured a piece on Adina Levin, the co-founder of Collab. Collab is short for collaborators, and is a Manhattan based company that plans on re-localizing the economy through helping designers, writers, artists, musicians and other creative people collaborate together to form a more sustainable world.

By enabling these innovative minds with the tools and space that they need to collaborate together, Collab hopes to get them inspired and working together, which will hopefully yield environmentally-friendly products and processes to help create localized economy.

One sustainable practice that Levin advocates–and is knowledgeable in–is making homemade paper. Levin uses a very similar process to the one posted here at Paper Making. She also promotes a messy, hands-on approach, often touching the paper pulp and getting very involved in the process. Her video and instructions are perfect for anyone who isn’t afraid to get messy and produce some truly amazing results.

Would using handmade paper really support a more local economy and a sustainable world in general? In a word, probably. By using 50% less energy and 75% less water–as well as creating up to 90% less wastewater and 70% less air pollution–than paper made from unused fibers, it definitely has less of an environmental impact.

How to Make Paper Mache

Another fun use of recycled paper is paper mache. Paper mache is a great method of making three dimensional paper crafts, such as masks, ornaments, and figurines.

First, select your paper. Feel free to use any paper you’ve made for this project–or simply using any paper currently in your recycling bin. Newspaper is considered an optimal choice.

Tear (don’t cut) your paper into thin strips. One to three inches is a good measure, but you can vary the size however you like. Continue reading

Using Paper in Non-Paper Products

Many fans of recycled paper products like to use paper for all sorts of things. Reusing paper to make recycled, homemade paper is a fun way to conserve and create, but there are literally dozens of other ways to give old paper a new life.

Many of these ways include other paper products, many of which we’ve already discussed. But did you know that many non-paper products use recycled paper as an ingredient? Continue reading

Tips for Teaching Paper-Making in the Classroom

Paper-making is a rewarding hobby and pastime, but it’s also a very enriching and exciting creativity for the classroom.

Whether the subject is art, with the paper serving as a canvas for inspiration, or science, with the topic being recycled paper, or history, the paper demonstrating the lengthy process of creating papyrus, making handmade paper can enhance the lesson into a tactile and moving experience for both the teach and the students. Continue reading

How To Make Rice Paper

If you’ve been making your own handmade paper now, you might want to try making rice paper. Rice paper is a beautiful and elegant creation that has been used in writing and art for centuries in China and Japan. Slightly translucent with a unique texture, it will be a lovely addition to your handmade paper collection.

Though rice paper traditionally means paper made from rice plants, today it can be made from just about any plant source, such as bamboo. Continue reading

How to Make Paper with Dryer Lint

With the threat of global warming and other environmental concerns looming over us these days, more people are turning to reusing and recycling things in their homes. It’s easy to find a new life for a milk jug, toilet paper rolls or even used clothing (did you know that you can make insulation out of old jeans?), but some household wastes are hard to find uses for.

Dryer lint may not have been on your list of things to reuse, but it can actually be a good base to use for making paper. Continue reading

Making Antique Paper

Whether you want to write a loved one something romantic with an aged flair, impress an English professor with an old-style sonnet, or simply add a bit of archaic edge to a pirate-themed party invitation, making antique paper is a great way to do it.

You may have already dabbled in trying to make your paper age quickly before. Continue reading

Making Plant-able Homemade Paper

Everyone experiences the conundrum of post-holiday, birthday, and other seasonal greeting card blues. What are we supposed to do with these lovely cards after the occasion passes?

While we might save a few for sentimental value, most are fairly generic. Sometimes we can use them in scrap booking, or creating cool origami crafts or boxes; but for the most part, we’ve got an extra box of recycling to turn in.

Fortunately, this is a problem that can be easily remedied with plant-able paper. Continue reading