Tissue paper and Gesso
Ah, tissue paper. It’s the wrapping tissue I’m talking about, that thin, translucent paper used for packing, wrapping, or protecting delicate articles. In Sweden it’s called silk paper (silkespapper). I don’t have a huge collection of it, but the plastic folder I have containing tissue papers is a little treasure among other papers in my stash. The reasons I love it so much are mainly:

* It’s transparent therefor perfect for layering in collage
* I like the feel and sound if it: it’s so thin that it rustles when you touch it.
* It’s extremely cheap if you’re collecting it at birthday parties and Christmas gift un-wrapping of gifts!

Tissue paper
Plain tissue paper with a brownish tint (I think this one was found in a shoe box once), and some polka dots that I’ve actually bought at a craft store (not free but still I had to have it, I adore polka dots!).

Last month I made Paper Cloth using fabric and tissue paper that eventually ended up as really cool layered looking Postcards. If you want to make paper cloth check out my tutorial for inspiration! It’s messy but fun. And now I’ve got another reason to enjoy tissue paper – I’m paining it to make pretty background papers! First a layer of gesso, then some paint. Amazingly fun to do!


Paint on tissue paper
Paint on tissue paper
Paint on tissue paper

The crusade to paint on tissue paper has been a revelation. How can painting on something so fragile be so fun? I have no idea so don’t ask me. Its just fun. Fun fun fun! Just try it for yourself and see if you like it.

When the paper is wet its difficult to handle, but once it has dried it becomes stronger and more fabric-like. I bet it would be fun to sew into this material. I’m going to try that next. I’m also experimenting with the transparent gesso (!) I bought for Suzi’s class. Cool stuff. There are always many more experiments to try. I hope I will never sit down and say: what to try next? Horror!

Big stamps
Anyway, whats next? I once bought some big letter stamps and almost never used them. I tend to forget my stamps. Today I took them out and stamped some letters on the painted tissue paper because Michelle Ward suggested it. Her favorite way to used painted tissue is to cut out stamped letters from it. I thought that sounded like a fun idea.

Letters and paint
Tadaa! With black acrylic paint I stamped these letters. You were supposed to “have a plan” for your page but I seldom do. I forgot what my plan was anyway when in the flow. I love getting into the flow process of creating a colorful journal page. The result looks like this:

Tissue Paper Crusade
Tissue paper experimenting, first page. More detail photos below.

Close-up photos from the tissue paper journal spread I made:

Inside my brain
Colors inside my brain.

Tissue paper Heart
Heart punched out from orange tissue paper.

Manekin magazine image
Cool image from magazine ad.

And the tissue paper – quite a powerful material!

Tissue paper resources

Also check out Michelle Ward’s crusade of March, the post that inspired this post, Grab a tissue (and participants list for more inspiration), and also The Paper Phantom’s post about tissue paper Almost Free art supplies! Also check out the e-book Card. Paper. Ribbon where you’ll find more cool tissue paper projects!