paste paper

paste paper workshop
on saturday i took a paste paper workshop at minnesota center for book arts. i had no idea what paste paper was, and i didn’t try too hard to figure it out beforehand — i wanted to be surprised by something new.

paste paper workshop
and it was really fun! the gist: you make paste with corn starch, cake flour, or methyl cellulose, and mix in color (we used acrylic paints). then wet down a large sheet of paper, and brush on the paste.

paste paper workshop
and then you make patterns! we used combs, nubby soap dishes, grouting tools, and a ton of squeegees that were cut apart. we mixed and swirled and got messy.

paste paper workshop
i’ll admit that it was tough to let those little imperfections go… a smudge here, a crooked line there… you can start over as many times as you want (it’s a lot like finger painting), but in the end i accepted that it’s better to love your “happy accidents” and move on to the next sheet.

paste paper workshop
i now have 25 big sheets of paste paper! you’ll see more of them in book-form some day. and i’m thinking that making paste paper would be a really great outdoor summer pARTy activity.

paste paper workshop
a bonus to my day: finding my burst journals in the center’s gift shop!

13 responses to “paste paper”

  1. shona~LALA dex press says:

    Paste papers are so much fun to make!

  2. Regina says:

    What fun! Good stuff.

  3. jenn says:

    sounds messy and fun and messily fun!

  4. Anna says:

    Totally fun! I love it. Can you feel the texture now that they’re dry?

  5. kristin says:

    oh! i can see anna and i now think alike since working together…i was wondering if you could feel the texture too. this looks like way too much fun. can’t wait to see them fancy-ing up your next set of journals.

  6. Jesse says:

    I remember doing this at primary school! Great fun – and much more beautiful results than I recall getting.

  7. cindy says:

    paste paper looks like so much fun and would make a great pARTy! your journal looks great on that table, too!

  8. Krissy says:

    What fun! I used to make paste paper in my parents basement and they thought I was a strange kid :) maybe that’s where paper schmaper started?! Your papers are gorgeous!

  9. Susie says:

    every one is more gorgeous than the next! YOWZA! You are prolific.

  10. jackie says:

    what really stands out to me was your willingness to not do any pre-research! to let yourself be surprised and leave yourself open. so fun, did it take you back to being a kid and finger painting?

  11. Christina says:

    that’s such good news!
    i love it!
    ps: thank you~ wink.

  12. Chandler says:

    I’ve never done paste paper before, because I always thought it kind of looked like a preschool project. But your paste paper is gorgeous—and so precise! (Which is especially impressive considering you didn’t practice or do any research ahead of time.) You’ve totally opened my eyes to what the medium can be—fantastic!

  13. Liza Walsh says:


    We are doing a workshop at our library of paste papers and I was so struck by your beautiful images of the paper. Could I use a photo of all the paper hanging for a flier that would only hang at our library? I would credit you with a photo credit.

    Thanks so much and I look forward to hearing back from you! Liza Walsh

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