Monday, March 16, 2009

A Technique To Revisit

This is a fun way to create distinctive background papers that I learned from my friend Pam Yee. She called it Crazy Paper and I have modified the instructions slightly. I love projects like this that allow me to use up a bunch of the scraps I can't bear to throw away.

Start with a sheet of sticker paper. Remove backing paper from just one segment at a time and plop down miscellaneous bits of cut or torn papers (especially mulberry and tissue papers), candy wrappers, whatever...mosaic-style. Try to keep in mind that you're building from back to front so save things with interesting graphics or texture for the uppermost layer.

Once you've covered the entire sheet, adhere more bits and pieces to cover all spaces where the sticker paper shows. We used gel medium. Now that you have a solid background strategically add little images, threads or fibers, glitter, leafing foil, or whatever you like to add interest and texture. Let dry thorougly. If desired, add a little heat-transfer foil or spray webbing to the dry surface.

Note: Pam's version used waxed paper and a base layer of gel medium instead of the sticker paper. However, I've never been able to peel the waxed paper off the back of my finished sheets. I'm wondering if it would come off a Teflon craft sheet or some of that new Reynolds Release Foil. The advantage to working without the sticker paper is that the final product is a lightweight, flexible, almost plasticized sheet that could be sewn or used in a variety of ways. My way yields a stiffer, thicker, paper-like sheet. Both are lovely.

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