lincoln embossed1 194x300 Embossing Handmade Paper

The embossed Lincoln Postcard is from Seaport Autographs

One of the paper effects you may want to use!

When talking about embossing, one of the methods that can be used is when you create handmade paper. While the newly made paper is still wet and malleable you can add impressions, which is another way to emboss paper. You can best accomplish this when the paper is couching or curing (drying) by using any of the techniques already mentioned.

Embossing is simply a method of creating a raised or recessed effect to your paper. Many greeting cards use this technique to alter the surface of the card and adding an elegant sculptured look. You too can add this feature to your new handmade paper.

There are several method or processes you can use to emboss your scrapbook paper or card stock. They are covered in greater detail in other articles on this site:

There are other simple ways to add impressions or embossing to your paper, but we will focus our attention on the four above, and what you can do when you make your own handmade paper.
One of the sought after features of paper making is the “deckle.” The deckle is that unfinished edge you most often see on cards. In the commercial paper making process this feather edge is sheered or cropped off. However, crafters like this effect, but are relegated to using a faux form of the deckle. This can be added to your paper or card in several ways . . . tearing or cutting the paper with tools to create this wonderful look.

See the following articles for more specific information on how to make your own handmade paper:

As noted above, freshly made paper is very malleable while it is in the couching and drying process. During this time the paper is more susceptible to accepting items that can be pressed into the paper and leave an impression–an embossing. Simple things like leaves, threads, calligraphy, or most anything with some texture can be used to leave that raised or recessed impression in your paper.

The thicker the paper the greater the embossing effect can be because the paper’s denseness allows for deeper impressions and raised areas. Thinner handmade paper typically doesn’t have the fiber strength to accommodate too vigorous of an embossing. However, because of its delicate nature simple subtle embossing will stand out just fine.

Once the paper has been allowed to couch and dry thoroughly, embossing can still be applied. Because of the open nature of the hand made paper’s make up from a pulp mix it will accept impressions quite readily. Paper thickness, as noted above, will be a major determinant in what form of embossing you can do to a piece of hand made paper. A thicker piece could well accept the mechanical methods of embossing. Thinner pieces of paper may be better embossed using the hand tooled relief method.

In understanding the variables and limitations to your hand made paper, you’ll want to experiment a bit to see which method and how much pressure your paper will accept to produce the effect you are after.

All in all, hand made paper is not only elegant in and of its self, but lends itself to embossing. Together, using both processes, you can crate a regal or delicate statement in your paper crafting.

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Ron on January 1st, 2009 | File Under Ideas | No Comments -