Art, Art activities, card making, Craft, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, Painting, paper art

Suminagashi

Suminagashi is one of the oldest practices of marbleizing paper! This Japanese art form can be dated back to the 12th century and it’s name, “suminagashi”, means floating ink! Floating ink is exactly what we’ll be doing to create these fun pieces of paper!

What you’ll need:

  • Plain copy paper – Just regular printer paper I found worked best!
  • A large pan of water – I used cold water in a 9″x13″ glass baking dish
  • Sumi brushes or large soft round brushes
  • Sumi ink or Higgins ink – I suggest black when first getting started for the best contrast!
  • Liquid dish soap
  • Optional: Pieces of cardstock & Mod Podge to turn your suminagashi papers into cards, tags and more!

Step one: Gather all your supplies. Fill your vat with approx. 1-2″ of water. In a small clean cup or dish, mix together a little dish soap and water (a drop of soap in 1/2 cup of water should do).

Step two: Dip one of your sumi brushes into your ink (try to just get ink on the brush bristles & avoid getting ink on the handle) and gently touch the surface of your water in your vat with the ink. You should be able to see the ink spread on the water’s surface! If it sinks to the bottom, try again, being careful not to break the waters surface with your brush. This also works best if your water is still – watch out for a lot of movement of a wobbly surface or a fan!

Step three: Grab another brush and dip this one into your soap mixture. Gently touch the surface of your water again, this time with the soapy mixture, placing your brush in the center of the ink bloom you made in the previous step! (Note: it can be hard to see the ink at first on the water’s surface, this is why I used blue ink, but don’t worry – your ink is still there!).

Step four: Continue going back and forth between your ink brush and your soapy mixture brush, repeating steps two & three, placing each alternating medium in the center of the last bloom you created. As you add more and more, it will continue to spread and fill your vat! If you’re having trouble getting your ink to float, sometimes this can mean we have too much soap in our water – try starting over with clean water and less soap in your soapy mixture!

Step five: If you have multiple colors of ink you can create your designs in the same steps above – just add in another brush with your additional color! This photo also shows a spot of ink that sank to the bottom of my vat – that blue spot we see on the left….any ink that ends up sinking, will not show on your paper, on the floating ink will become apart of your pattern!

Step six: You can also create multiple spots/centers on your surface by creating the pattern with your ink & soap mixture in various places – in this picture you can see four areas where I repeated the ink & soap mix pattern. You can also gently blow on the water’s surface to “move” your ink around on the surface. Even a little air movement will naturally do this to your ink on the surface, as well as the movement to the surface you’ll create when adding your ink and soap mixture! Be prepared to have your ink move around on the water surface slightly!

Step seven: Once you have your ink design on the surface of your water, gently place a piece of your paper on top – I find the best way to do this is to roll the paper slightly, having the center hit the water first and then carefully let the paper unroll onto the water.

Step eight: Let your paper sit in your water until the ink shows through slightly (like in the photo here or in step seven), this will only take around 30 seconds.

Step nine: Carefully lift your paper out of the water – the paper will be fragile as it’s wet, try to support it with your whole hand.

Step ten: Lay your wet paper on a flat protected work surface to dry. You may find that once dry, your paper is wrinkly – you can remedy this by placing a heavy stack of books on your paper for 24hrs (just make sure your paper is completely dry first!) or by ironing your paper flat – use a piece of parchment paper under and on top of your paper to protect from the iron.

Turn your papers into cards, gift tags, collages, bookmarks, stationary, origami, or for scrap booking projects!

Check out this method for other marbleized papers and this one to marbleize eggs! Be sure to let me know if you’ve given this a try!

Art, Art activities, card making, Craft, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, paper art

Paper Mosaics

This is a great way to use up any paper scraps you might have left over from some other art projects! Paper mosaics are easy and can be made simple or into more detailed pieces of art. A mosaic is simply a piece of art that has been put together using smaller pieces of tiles (usually, stone, ceramic, shell, glass), typically of different colors, placed closely together to create a larger image or design. Instead of the typical tile and grout we may think of for mosaics, this project uses pieces of colored paper arranged closely together!

What you need:

  • Scrap pieces of colored paper – You could also use magazines, junk mail, etc.
  • Glue stick
  • Scissors and/or paper cutter
  • Piece of card stock or thicker paper to complete your mosaic on (my piece is appox. 5″x7″) You could also make it into a greeting card!

Step one: Gather your scrap papers! You can either cut your paper into a lot of geometric shapes in various sizes, or plan out a design – cutting blocks of colors that will get cut smaller later.

Step two: Start to arrange your pieces of cut paper on your card stock. You want your pieces to fit together like a puzzle – leaving small even gaps of the card stock showing between your pieces. Flip, rotate, and trim pieces as needed!

If you’ve cut larger pieces for a pattern, you can start to cut and separate into smaller pieces. You can also draw an outline of a shape or object to fill in like in the video.

Step three: Get your cats to help you.

Step four: Once you have your pattern started you can begin to glue down pieces – remember to leave the gaps between your pieces! The better your pieces fit together the more even gaps you’ll create between them! Sometimes you might have to cut and add little tiny pieces to fill in gaps. This is what give us the mosaic effect!

Step five: Keep going until you have your entire pattern glued down!

Make some awesome artwork just with paper! You can turn your finished paper mosaics into greeting cards, framed art, or incorporate them into collage artworks or even create them on wooden boxes with mod-podge instead of glue sticks! 🙂

Art, Art activities, card making, Craft, DIY, Holiday, Make, Create, & Share!, origami, paper art, pop-up

Father’s Day Pop-up Fishing Card

Could you even fish for a better Dad? Make him a special Father’s Day card to let him know how Fin-tastic he is 🙂

What you need:

  • Card stock in the color you’d like for the outside of your card – 8.5″x11″, folded in half to make a 5.5″x8.5″ card
  • Card stock in the color you’d like for the inside of your card – 8″x10″, folded in half to make a 5″x8″ card
  • Watercolor paper – 8″x10″
  • Watercolor paint
  • Sea Salt (table salt can be used instead, however, the effect we’ll be creating will not be as dramatic)
  • A piece of a mesh onion bag (or any mesh bag you may get fruits of veggies in)
  • Tin Foil
  • Sharpies
  • Scissors
  • Paint Brushes
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Glue stick & Craft Glue

MAKING THE WAVES:

Step one: Prepare your watercolor paints. I prefer watercolors from a tube and mix them with some water. I used cool colors – shades of blues, greens, & purples for my waves.

Step two: Cover your entire piece of watercolor paper with your paint – Work quickly to achieve a “wet on wet” technique where your colors will move and blend together while all your paint is wet!

Step three: While your paint is still wet sprinkle sea salt all over your paper! The salt creates a cool effect on your watercolor paint that gives us a unique look for your waves. Your paint still needs to be wet for the effect of the salt to work – the wet paint will pool around the pieces of salt, creating the textured effect! Adding too much salt can cause the effect not to show as well. If you only have table salt you will still get the effect just not as dramatic as the larger pieces of salt!

Step four: Let your paper dry completely – the salt effect works best if your paper dries naturally vs using a hair dryer to speed up the process (you can move onto one of the other card making sections for the time being). Once it’s dry, brush off the pieces of salt.

Step five: Cut your watercolor paper into stripes – you need one strip that measures 8″x 2″ and two strips that measure 8″x1.5″

Step six: On the back of your strips draw a wave pattern and cut out – you can use your first cut out wave to trace on your other strips or create a different pattern on each strip. I saved pieces of the wave I cut out to use a splashes of water later (you can also cut splashes out of your leftover watercolor paper).

MAKING THE CARD BASE:

Step one: Fold your card stock papers for the inside and outside of your card.

Step two: On the folded edge of your inside card stock, complete the measurements shown in the photo.

Step three: Cut on the lines shown in orange.

Step four: Open your card and fold in the sections cut in the last step – use your fingers on the back of your card to push the sections through. Fold the sections on your same center crease line, just in the opposite direction! Create new crease lines at the point you cut to. (The top image shows what your card should look like when it’s closed and the bottom image shows what it should look like open)

Step five: Fold your card back up and cut on the orange lines.

Step six: Open your card back up and fold in the sections you just cut – the same way you completed step four. You will have two sections to fold on each of your original sections or blocks. (The top image shows the cut lines before folding, the image on the right shows the folds, and the bottom image shows what your card should look like folded)

Step seven: Once you have cut and folded both sides your inside card is finished and should look like the photo!

MAKING THE FISH:

Step one: Gather your sharpies, tin foil and piece of mesh onion bag.

Step two: Tape your mesh to your work surface and then tape your tin foil on top.

Step three: Draw and color your fish on the tin foil with your sharpies – the mesh creates a scaly texture for your fish! My fish are not much larger than an inch.

Step four: Carefully cut out your fish!

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER!

Step one: Glue your fish to your wave pieces with a craft glue.

Step two: Glue each of your wave pieces onto the blocks you created.

Step three: Use a glue stick and add any splashes of water you’d like from your watercolor paper.

Step four: Close your card and using a glue stick, glue the inside card to your outside piece of card stock – your outside card is slightly larger so you’ll have a nice border around your inside piece!

Your card is complete! Decorate the front of your card and add a special message for your dad! Happy Father’s Day to all you Dads!

Art, card making, Craft, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, paper art

Paper Quilling Art

Create unique and decorative designs out of paper! Paper quilling involves nothing more than rolling strips of paper and utilizing these rolls by forming different shapes, designs, and patterns. It’s a simple process that can create, what looks like, complex pieces of art! Here, we’ll make a finished design with the paper quilling process that can be turned into a greeting card or decorative piece of art, however, paper quilling can also be used to decorate boxes, make jewelry, ornaments, and embellish other works of art with!

What you need:

  • Paper for quilling – I suggest a thinner card stock, typically copy paper is too thin, experiment with what you have and see what works best! I’ll be using papers in shades of blues and greens for this example, however, feel free to change up your design!
  • Card stock – cut to 5″x5″ (or desired size) or folded into a card
  • Glue – A glue stick and craft glue (I used Tacky glue – Elmer’s would work too).
  • Tweezers – these may come in handy to help hold your glued areas and place your paper rolls!
  • A needle or toothpick – these are to help roll your paper strips, try both and see which works best for you! I prefer the toothpick!

Step one: First take your paper for quilling and cut one piece that’s 1/4″ wide and 11\

” long. Then cut several other pieces it into strips 1/8″ wide and about 6″ long – A paper cutter is the easiest way to do this but you can also use a ruler and xacto knife! Take your 1/4″ x 11″ strip of paper and glue the ends together, overlapping about 1/2″, to create a circle. Glue your circle to a piece of card stock (cut to your desired size or folded into a card) with craft glue. This circle will be what we fill with your quilled paper!

Step two: Now we will be quilling your other strips of paper (1/8″ x 6″), first, take a strip of your paper and using either your needle or toothpick tightly roll the paper around it. You can either roll the entire piece of paper upon itself, while still on the toothpick/needle, or just use it to help get the roll going an roll the rest by hand (this is the method I find easiest).

Step three: Carefully remove your paper roll from your toothpick or needle (if your roll is still on it) – it’s okay if it unwinds and loosens up slightly. Use the glue stick to glue down the end of your roll. If needed, you can tighten back up your roll by gently pinching the roll between your thumb and index finger and pulling your end piece and then glue. You can use your tweezers to help pinch the glued area until it’s stuck!

Step four: Now we can take your roll and use it as it is, or pinch the ends to form different shapes to use in your project! The next few photos we’ll go over some additional ways to create different rolls with your paper!

Create a half roll – by only rolling a portion of your strip.

Create an ‘S’ roll – by rolling half of your strip and then roll your other end in the opposite directions.

Create a triangle – Start with a rolled circle and pinch into a triangle.

Create a heart – Roll half a strip, then roll the other half in the same direction, pinch the strip in the center of the rolls to form the heart.

Create a square – Start with a circle roll and pinch corners to create a square.

Create an eye – Start with a circle and pinch ends to create an eye shape.

Step five: Create several quilled pieces of paper – for my example I mostly used the, half roll and S roll methods. I wanted it to look like my circle was filled with wavy water – these methods allowed me to create that effect using line!

Step six: Arrange your quilled pieces in your circle as desired. If you have gaps you can use single strips of your paper to fill in more spaces or create more quilled pieces to fill gaps. Glue all your pieces down with craft glue (I found it easiest to apply a thin layer of glue inside my whole circle) use your tweezers to help hold your pieces in place – you can even use your toothpick or needle to help move pieces around, if you have some tricky pieces to get to!

Step seven: Complete your project by adding a small cut-out on top! I made my quilling to look like water so I added a shark on top! If you made yours to look like water some other ideas for your cut out could be: a turtle, jellyfish, fish, sail boat, sea shell, octopus, etc. Instead of creating your own cut out you could also use stickers or 3D elements such as pom-poms, shells, silk flowers, etc. The same method could also look like wind or clouds – cut outs could be birds, kites, tree branches, rainbows, etc.!

Some other ideas would be to start off with a different shape to fill – you could do another simple shape or create a more complicated outline, like a letter, to fill with your quilling! You also can just create quilling that’s not inside a shape – like the flower in the video. Get creative and have fun with the possibilities of this art form! Send me pictures of your paper quilling masterpieces to add to our followers gallery!

Art, card making, Craft, DIY, Make, Create, & Share!, origami, pop-up

Mother’s Day Hydrangea Pop-Up Card

Make your mom this fun hydrangea pop-up card for Mother’s day! Though there are a few steps to this project, with just some basic supplies you can create this simple, yet amazing, pop-up card. I was inspired by hydrangeas for my pop-up flowers which can come in blues, pinks, and purples – but you can make your flowers any color or multiple colors! We’ll be starting with white paper and be adding the color to our paper as we go but feel free to skip the coloring steps and just use colored paper! Check out the video at the bottom for steps as well!

What you need:

  • Copy Paper
  • Colored card stock or Construction Paper- measurements
  • Green Construction Paper
  • Pencil
  • Washable Markers
  • Scissors
  • A Small Paint Brush
  • Small Dish or Cup of Water

Step one: Cut your white copy paper into 7 squares that measure 4″ x 4″ – each of these will become one of your flowers! Fold each of your 7 squares as shown in the picture – Fold in half lengthwise, left to right, then fold the bottom edge to the top edge, finally fold the bottom right corner to the top left corner to form a triangle. You want to make sure one point of your triangle is closed (should be the point that’s towards you) – that’s the center of your paper, the other points should have multiple flaps of paper.

Step two: Making sure the center of your paper is at the bottom, draw a curved line at the top of your paper and cut out. Use this cut out to trace the curved line on all 6 remaining triangles and then cut them out!

Step three: Now that you have all 7 flowers cut it’s time to add some color! Grab your washable markers in the colors you would like! Color just along the edges of your folded flower (making sure to hit all the folds & flaps along the edge). You can use one color or multiple colors on the same flower – just keep in mind our colors may mix.

Step four: Now we’re going to make that color spread! We will need your paintbrush and a small dish of water. Paint with water over top of the marker – this will make the marker ink spread and give a slight tie-dyed effect to your flowers! Make sure not to keep brushing over your flower in the same spot or use too much water – this will make your paper weak and cause it to tear! Keep your flowers folded and let them set for about 15 – 30 mins. to let the color continue to spread!

Step five: While your flowers are setting; Cut a piece of card stock or construction paper for your card that measures 11″x 7.5″ – this will be the background to your flowers. You could also color a background for your flowers instead of using a solid color! Fold your paper in half so it measures 7.5″ x 5.5″. Decorate the front of your card however you’d like (just leave the inside black for now).

Step six: Now that your flowers have set, it’s time to carefully unfold them all! They may still be a little wet – make sure to be gentle when opening them so they don’t rip! Lay your flowers flat and let them dry completely – you can speed this up with a hairdryer!

Step seven: Once your flowers are completely dry, then we will be cutting one “petal” out from each of them. Next, close the gap we created by overlapping and glueing the two petals together (glue the two petals marked with yellow dots in the picture) – giving your flower a 3D form and a total of 6 petals.

Step eight: Fold each flower in half, flattening it – so we can see three petals. Next we will be layering and glueing all of your flowers together in a certain pattern to create the pop-up. We will only be gluing the top portion of your petals in the next steps (from the yellow line shown in the picture and up) – do not apply glue on the entire petal or your card will not pop-up properly.

Step nine: Layering your flowers; Lay one flower down and apply glue to the tips of the petals that are marked with yellow dots in the photo. Glue two flower petals on top as shown in the second photo – you should now only be able to see the center petal of your original flower (marked with the green dot).

Apply glue to the tips of the petals marked with yellow dots and add another flower on top – lining it up with your first flower. The green dots show the petals from your last layer.

Apply glue to the tips of the petals with yellow dots and add two more flowers vertically – lining them up with your other vertical petals. The petal with the green dot should be the only petal from your previous layer showing.

Add glue to the petal tips marked with yellow dots and finally take your last flower, gluing it down horizontally – lining it up with your other horizontal petals. The green dots show the petals still visible from your last layer. Keep your flowers folded.

Step ten: Create leaves for your flower out of green construction paper and add veins with a marker. Glue the leaves to your flowers – you can add leaves to each side of your folded flowers. Make sure leaves are glued to one petal – not on a crease line of two petals. Leaves should also not go past the yellow line shown in the photo.

Step eleven: Open up the card you prepared in step six and lay your flowers along the center line as shown. Add glue just to the tip of the center petals, shown with a yellow dot, on each side of your flower (the very center petal) – close your card and press. It’s best to let your glue dry for quite a few minuets – setting something heavy, like a book, on your card while it’s drying can be helpful!

Once your glue is dry carefully open your card to reveal your pop-up!

You can change up your flowers by starting with colored paper instead of white, or using different methods to decorate your paper with. You can also change the shape of your petals in step two by making a different type of line, rather than a curve. Have fun and get creative making your mom something special! Send me pictures of your finished pop-up cards to add to our followers gallery! And happy Mother’s Day to all you mom’s out there!