Designing and Making Paper Items






There are several ways of decorating paper. Most of the techniques were born out of experimentation of the artist with the colors and other materials found in the environment. This assumes that as of those methods that will be detailed, every artist must endeavor to create new ways of designing paper items.

1. Marbling (controlled and uncontrolled)
2. Comb-pattern
3. Wax resist
4. Doodling
5. Spraying
6. Roller and twine pattern
7. Ink-blowing

1. Marbling (controlled and uncontrolled)
Marbling is a method of making decorative patterns on paper by transfering color from the surface of a liquid onto paper. Tools and materials required for marbling include paper, brushes, thinner, basin or trough, various colors of oil paint, cooked starch, empty tins, stick, and water.
Controlled Marbling

Process:

1. Fill a trough with cooked starch in an even consistency.
2. Sprinkle different colors of oil paint on the starch.
3. With the aid of the stick, stir gently for the colors to mix on the surface of the starch in order to make the patterns.
4. Place paper flat on top of the starch and tap the back to remove trapped air.
5. Hold one edge of the paper and remove it by dragging it along the edge of the trough to remove the starch.
6. Excess starch is washed off with water and hung to dry.

Uncontrolled Marbling

Process:

1. Fill a trough with water.
2. Sprinkle different colors on the water.
3. Stir in different directions for the colors to come together over water.
4. Place paper flat on top of the trough and tap the back to remove trapped air.
5. Hold one edge of the paper and remove it by dragging it along the edge of the trough.

2. Comb-pattern
The tools and materials are large brush, paper or hair comb, cooked starch, water, powder colors, paper.

Process:

1. Mix powder color with cooked starch to an even consistency to form a thin paste.
2. The brush is used to paint paste over the entire surface of paper.
3. The comb is used in making rhythmic patterns on the sheet.
4. It is hung to dry.

3. Wax resist
Tools and materials required for this paper pattern making technique include brush, crayon or candle, powder color, paper.

Process:

1. A sheet of paper is folded and creased to create parallel lines.
2. Wax is used to draw lines within the folded lines.
3. Go over the lines for a second run.
4. Colors are mixed and painted over the waxed paper.

Another technique is to sprinkle molten wax on paper. It is painted over with any high key color. Wax is sprinkled over again and painted over with a low-key color. After drying it, place the paper between two sheets of newspaper and iron to remove the wax leaving the patterned design.

4. Doodling
The tools and materials used include pencil, colors, paper, and brushes.

Process:

1. Create doodles to cover the entire sheet. Doodles are scribbles make on paper without any forethought plan.
2. Different colors are mixed to paint familiar shapes created by the doodles.
3. Erase the extensions created by the pencil.

5. Spraying
Tools and materials used include spray diffuser or shoe brush, paper, color, cut out shapes, natural objects.

Process:

1. Arrange the natural objects or patterned templates and maintain their positions with drawing pins on the sheet of paper.
2. Spray colors on the patterns using the spray diffuser or an empty pen barrel with a mesh held at one end.
3. Gently remove the drawing pins and the cut out patterns.
4. The sprayed patterns on the paper is left to dry.

6. Roller and twine pattern
Tools and materials used include paper, printing ink, two hand rollers, rags, twine, thinner, glass slab.

Process:

1. Twine is wound around one hand roller.
2. Printing ink is placed on glass slab and rolled over with the second roller.
3. Printing ink is transferred onto the twined roller by rolling it over the glass slab.
4. The inked roller roller is rolled over the paper from the edge to edge and covered all over.
5. The rollers are cleaned with thinner and a different color is used to go over the already created pattern to give a two colored effect.

7. Ink-blowing
Tools and materials used include ink, paper, and empty pen barrel.

Process:

1. Sprinkle the paint at different sections on the paper.
2. Blow the paint to sprinkle it in a hairstyle manner using the empty pen barrel.
3. Leave the paper to dry.

Decorative papers are used for making book covers, endpaper, wrappers, wallpaper, background for calligraphy etc.