Hearts shapes are so last month, with March just a few days away it time to think of "Shamrocks" and GREEN.
From the last post I wrote, I mentioned how I was playing around with paper pulp. After making several sheets of handmade paper to be used in cards for embellishments, I decided to use paper pulp to form thicker shapes and thicker pieces of paper to be used for other projects.
The idea of making thick shapes and paper sheets was to show how hamdmade paper pieces like these can be used several other ways. The texture of handmade paper and shapes adds to any element you can make.
After forming a thick shamrock shape, with a cookie cutter as a deckle, it became a perfect base for a necklace. It was colored using thinned acryrlic paints of various green hues. It was applied by tapping the colors onto the surface using a brush or sponge applicator. NOTE: Do not use too much water in this process. Allow the piece to dry between applications as not to saturate the paper too much. When the coloring is to your liking, allow the piece to dry very well and it will become very firm once again.
Punch a small hole near the top where desired and add a eyelet. Add a large jump ring for the necklace. I used two different size and colors of crystals to apply to the shape. Using a thin beading wire, transfer each set of crystals onto length of wire. Begin wrapping the crystals around the shape, keeping the crystals only on the front of the surface. NOTE: I began with the smaller sized crystals on the bottom and overlapping the larger ones on top. I left a small length of wire on the back side from each strand of beading wire to twist and connect the two to hold them in place.
At the bottom of the shamrock a small hole was made with a piercing tool and a wishbone charm on a jump ring was added.
Three different strands cord or ribbon became the necklace. Cut the same length from a jute cording, and two different ribbons. Find the middle and lace through the large jump ring. Each side was braided and then knotted to from the necklace.
After finishing the necklace I thought why not add something else. So a pair of earrings were created, again with only papers. To make the base discs and the small shamrocks, I used scraps of other handmade papers that were left from the previous projects. Punch two round circles for each earring from the paper, punch three flower shapes for each earring from the paper. NOTE: It may be helpful to place the paper to be punched between two pieces of waxed paper. This aids in the process of punching the handmade papers. I trimmed one of the flower petals with small scissors to form the stem of the shamrock. The flower shapes are glued together to give them a little more stability. NOTE: As each is glued, I trimmed it to make the stem. The finished shamrocks are colored using the same process as above.
I created two discs for the background using handmade paper scraps also. I made them to look similar to the metal discs that could have been used. This was done to show how paper can replicate other mediums. Again, I glued two layers of the punched circles together for each earring. Two more circles were punched from a gold cardstock I had on hand for the backside. NOTE: Three layers of the paper circles would work fine too. This was just a preference. These circles are glued to the others with the gold facing out. The front surface was colored with a bronze paint and when dry, I inked over the discs with Vintage Photo and Walnut Stain Distress Inks. The results looked very similar to the copper metal discs. Pierce a hole into the top of each disc for a jump ring and attach. Add a smaller ring to the earring wire, then attach to the the earring disc. I coated the discs with Ranger Glossy Enamel to give them a resin look.
These ideas that I have shared so far are created to show the various ways handmade paper can be used. It is a fun process to create your own papers or castings. Paper can be used for many things besides writing on!
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