Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Tea Stained Paper Tutorial

I am in the middle of a super secret project, but I wanted to share a simple tutorial with you to make brand new paper look aged. 

Originally I was on the hunt for some old encyclopedias for my project, but all I could find was children's encyclopedias which had too many pictures (I wanted words only) or whole sets (wouldn't sell just one or two) that were antique and I wouldn't want to cut up anyways.  I finally gave up and just came up with another idea.  Which turned out so much better and cheaper (FREE) anyways.

I have done this technique with my classes, as young as third grade, before so it must be simple.

I printed out my 5 pages for my project (words only!!) in 5 different languages.  I know you are wondering now what this secret project is all about, but you are just going to have to wait. :)

I wanted the final look of the pages to have a little dimension, so I crumpled the pages up one time.  If you want it to have more creases and cracks you should open, flatten, and crumple your paper a couple more times.

I flattened out the papers onto aluminum foil.  Don't use newspaper because the newspaper will bleed and tear when it gets wet.  I put a tea bag in hot water for just a few seconds.  I squished it a little until I started to see color coming out of the bag.  You will need the tea bag to be pretty wet.  I used regular computer paper and got it pretty wet and it held up really well (as long as you don't try to move the paper after you start).  You will need to blot the tea bag over the entire paper until it is completely covered. 

Do NOT try to rub the tea bag over the paper.  The teabag might break, the paper might rip, and your words might bleed.  Just keep up the blotting.  Make sure you cover every single part of your paper, or when it dries you will have really bright white spots.  The tea will soak into the paper and make it a little darker as it dries.  Make sure you squeeze out some of the tea as you are blotting to give the color to your paper. 

Leave your papers alone to dry overnight.  They will stiffen back up and be ready for you to use or display.  Happy Staining!  Stay tuned to see how I use these papers in a project that I am SUPER DUPER EXCITED about!