Distressing Paper is basically any technique that causes wear or gives the appearance of damage, aged or wear to paper. There are many techniques used in paper crafting to distress paper including those that physically damage the paper or add chemicals to the paper to give it an aged, weathered or worn look.
Crumpling. This can be done wet or dry.
- Dry: Crumple the paper into a loose ball. Gently unfold paper. And repeat the desired softness and wrinkling is achieved. A brayer or warm iron can be used to flatten paper. The strings on the balloons were created from crumpled up strips of paper.
- Wet: Mist the Paper with warm water. Wad the paper into a ball, and Carefully unfold. Allow the paper to dry. I typically lay the paper on a couple of towels, place a plexi glass on top with several heavy books and allow it to dry overnight. Some crafters suggest ironing the paper. If you iron it, I would treat the paper like your delicates and place a towel over it so you don't burn the paper.
- Embossing Plates - Sizzix Has even created embossing plates for creating a distressed look and feel to paper & card stock. (PN 114531 - Texture Plates Kit #4) For a tutorial on using these plates, click here or the picture below.
- Crimping:Crimping is achieved by running paper through a Crimper (PN 101618). Stampin' Up! offers a Crimper which crimps paper up to 6-1/2" wide.
Surface Distressing:This is achieved by applying tools or medium to the surface of the paper with the purpose of achieving a distressed look.
Common tools for distressing a surface include.
- Sanding Blocks (PN 103301)
- Sanding Paper
- Steel Wool
- Wire Brush
- Razor Blade
Common Mediums used to distress paper include
- Inks & Pastels - can be applied to edges of paper or applied to already distressed paper with Sponges (PN 101610), Sponge Daubers (102892) and/or a Color Spritzer Tool (PN 107066) to create aged looks.
- Coffee or Tea Dying - Soak your paper in a strong coffee or tea until it is slightly darker than the desired color. This works well with silk scarves as well. Allow the paper to dry. I typically lay the paper on a couple of towels, place a plexi glass on top with several heavy books and allow it to dry overnight.
Distressing Edges -
- Distressing Tool -Stampin' Up! offers a 7 sided distressing tool in their Cutter Kit (PN 106958) which can be used with varying pressures to produce a roughed up textured edge on any card stock. The image below used the distressing tool to distress the edges of the Sage card stock.
- Tearing Paper is another way to create a distressed edge. You can tear it yourself to create a unique look or Use the Tearing Edge (102930) by Stampin' Up! to create a neat by shabby straight tear. This tool is perfect for achieving that professional look!
- The Spiral Punch (PN 108341) was used to create the torn from a notebook look of this "thank you" note.
I hope that you enjoy these methods of distressing and use them to DE-STRESS while creating your favorite projects!