Recycle That Paper!

Of course you all know how much I love to create raw foods, but did you know I love to recycle paper?

No...I don't mean bringing paper to the recycling station:) I recycle paper right at home!

Last week, I received a package in the mail. The packing material was brown paper, shown in the picture above. I don't see much brown paper anymore, especially since bringing my own bags when shopping.

Any paper can be recycled, but brown paper is one of my favorites. I would love to show you how easy it is to do. I am making paper castings today for Christmas cards.

The first thing needed for this "green" project is an old, or inexpensive blender. Please do not use your expensive high speed blender for this!!! I have an old cheapo:) blender used just for papermaking now. You probably should not use the blender for making food after making paper in it anyway. I always see blenders at the Goodwill store, for just a few dollars!

Another thing you need is a mold. I will be making cards and decorations with these Christmas cookie molds.

There are some papermaking kits that have a mold included, but I also use chocolate molds, cookie molds and stamps, and my own molds made from clay. Most molds work best if wiped lightly with a cloth with a drop of cooking oil on it.

Other things needed are water, a sponge, a strainer, and a towel.

Onto the fun part!!!

How to Make Paper Castings:
Step 1: Tear paper into blender, 1-2 inch pieces work well.

Step 2: Add warm water to blender, you want 2-3 times more water than paper.

Step 3: Blend!!! Pulp will be very loose.

Step 4: Strain, I have a wire strainer for this. Strained pulp is like wet mashed potatoes.

Step 5: Over-fill mold with wet pulp. Place filled mold on a folded towel.

Step 6: Sponge out water. This will take several times of pressing the wet pulp and wringing sponge out. Press into details of mold. Fill in any open spaces.

Step 7: Allow to dry. This will take a day or two, depending how warm your house is. I haven't tried the dehydrator yet, but I bet that would work! If you still have a microwave, and you are impatient, you can use the defrost setting, 2 minutes at a time till dry. It will pop right out when dry!

Step 8: Your paper casting is ready to use as a tree decoration, or to glue to a card or gift tag. Dried paper castings may also be painted or otherwise embellished with glitter or bows,etc.

I also have a paper making kit to make sheets of paper.

Check out this link for all types of papermaking supplies. Most paper can be recycled and I love adding pressed flowers and other little things like strings, raffia, glitter:) and leaves to my paper.

One of my favorite things to add is dried flower petals from bouquets and flowers I have received over the years.

I use the handmade paper for wrapping small gifts, or making cards or gift tags.

I hope you will try this fun way to recycle your own paper!

I hope to show you how to make cute gift boxes from recycled greeting cards in an upcoming post:)


Angelique said...

You are like the Martha Stewart of Raw world -- I love it! I used to make paper too (using wildflowers and such) and love your idea of using molds. It's been years since I've made paper and this looks like a perfect project to do w/the kids. I'll have to start saving some of those catalogs flooding the mailbox... Thanks!

p.s. I just noticed you added Raw Shopper to your list of interesting sites. Very cool -- Thanks!

bitt said...

I used to do this when I was an art teacher at a day camp. The kids LOVED making paper. We added bits of colored tissue to make it different colors. They used to have lots of scraps of paper so we had a big supply. I love the idea of making them into gift tags!

evergreen said...

Hi Angelique...I am so happy that you like this idea and hope you try it again with the kids:)

I love your raw shopper site and am glad to include it in my sidebar:)

Hi bitt...you never cease to amaze me, as I had no idea you were an art teacher too! No wonder you are so creative:)

I used to make paper almost weekly in my daycare, the kids insisted on it!!!

Sarah said...

I love this idea! You're so crafty ;~) I'll have to find an old blender and give this a try with my children!

evergreen said...

Hi Sarah...thanks:)

Check the thrift stores in your area, I always see a few at mine, and I see the cookie molds too!

Hope you can try it with your little ones:)

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