DIY Papermaking Basics | Open Hands Creative | Skillshare

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

10 Lessons (24m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Materials + Set Up

    • 3. Pulping

    • 4. Pulling

    • 5. Couching

    • 6. Pressing

    • 7. Drying

    • 8. Troubleshooting

    • 9. Clean Up

    • 10. Conclusion - What to do with paper

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About This Class


In this tutorial you will learn the basic skills to make paper at home. We teach you how to make A5 white paper from all your paper scraps through a sustainable set-by-step process.

What is covered:

  • Materials + set up,
  • Pulping,
  • Pulling,
  • Pressing,
  • Drying,
  • Clean up
  • What to do with your paper.

This video contains the basic process of making paper which can be implemented in many ways, for example you don’t have to make A5 paper, you could make A4 or bigger.


Download this step-by-step instructions PDF.

(Designed to accompany our DIY Papermaking KITS, but you can use it to start from scratch at home).


Here are some cheat sheets for after watching the video:




Please also check out our DIY Papermaking KITS:



We also run physical workshops in Perth, WA. Check out more on our website:



  • Adding petals + seeds to paper
  • Playing with colour

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Open Hands Creative

Morgan + Jordan


Helping to unlock creativity and experience art in a sustainable way.


Open Hands Creative is an art experience business that offers creative workshops, immersive events, and community connection. We believe in bringing like-minded people together and forming an open community that gives back to our planet. We are proud to be a plastic and waste free small Australian business. We are based in Perth, WA.


In our classes you will either be taught by Morgan (owner) or Jordan (co-founder). You can read a little bit about us on our website:

See full profile

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1. Introduction: I think I found this. Our hands. Great salvation is to help you make more sustainable choices when doing on some Kraft. So I'm here today to talk about pick May, very exacting one of my favorite things to do. The fighting is one of the largest industries in the world, if the fifth largest consumer of energy and the largest consumer warship, that kind of product in the whole world. So there's a lot of waste going on, but we've picked making at home. You can actually reduce some of that waste because, well, there we can professionally recycled paper, which he has done quite a lot. It actually uses quite a lot of water and chemicals and a lot of energy. So when we make a home, it's just out there in energy at a little bit of water. So not only is tape so good at producing west and energy, but it creates a really beautiful based because you can use in so many different ways. Sorry, let's get started 2. Materials + Set Up: Let's go through the tears that you're going to. Nate, a rolling pin a my her karmic law. You could get a sponge or a tease out. That's just a press the water out of your paper we got here, Christian cloths. Now we've made out of old bid shape that we got from an up shop and just cut it into squishes. They just started a a little bit bigger than the size of the paper that you're going to make. Now here is what we call a mold. And Dicle, this is at the bottom, is the most on that faces up. And then this is the vehicle and that sits on top. All of these things come as pot of your paper making kids that we sell a bit. But you really sold a little these things on your right. Even the Golden Jekyll. This is the original one that we might. It just made out of a couple of its supply that you could make it out of two brothers frames and just put baseball fly. Why? And then this is our blanket, which is gonna be used to observable the woman, so it just has being folded really, really, really neatly and smugly so there's no wrinkles, and I got enough of it hanging over the edge that I could fold this over the top of my paper. This is an old blanket again. You could go to an op shop, gets just a bed sheet, or you could use the bed sheets that you have a harm. But remember that if you're going to use things like flowers or petals, it might stain. But if you're just using black paper, it should all wash up. We've got. Here are that of water. This is go about 10 centimetres of water in it. The state I like using this drink cooler than I thought that you could use, like a plastic toe or even your laundry sink. It just makes it a little bit hotter when you're trying to keep out the water at the end. I got here a blend up. I hope this line from my local by nothing great afraid, which is great. That's about 40 years ago. Very cool, but you could use a little. We already have saying that if you use the blend that you really have, you really want to wash it very well after it. And the paper could blood to the Blakes about some washer and a little luck here, and we've got some paper. Most important, this is, I'm sure your paper that we got from documents that we traded up and also some old drones from some of the questions. So that's everything that you're going to eight. 3. Pulping: So I stopped by making pulp. This is one hot, my favorite. We're into a paper in here, but I'm sure paper, which is just some old documents, that stuff. And then we also have some during surround workshop. See the drinks people haven't taken home? Sure. How small You want to shred this during? Sorry. I find about three is the next thing that I can get on with each other. So you want explains about the sides? That's about true. Sent to me by chasing me is maximum freeze. Put that up. And who? So I feel live lender about halfway up before it gets a little bit close by. Each lender is different on. Then you're gonna want Teoh couple. This paper is just enough water to coverage. Really? That's not right. You have a little bit more will shop than not enough because you're pouring it into about a faltering Doesn't matter. So I'm going to stop lending this. You can see that I've got fine. I will create with a little text. You have to see the little licious and lines in your paper, but I want to make a little bit of a smiley face. I'm going to post for another 30 seconds. They go to Maxim's group paper. What we're gonna do now is pour it straight in 12. Now, you find that that is a little bit left, are But in the bottom, I just get a little bit of the clean water for me to wish for. Now, we're gonna check that consistently. So if you put your hands into the back open like this and just put it down, you can see how the paper is. Now I want my hand to disappear up at about truth into me. To think right now, I can still see it, so I probably need a little bit more. Okay. Well, I'm pretty happy with that consistency. Sorry. Now we're going to learn about how should pull a sheet. 4. Pulling: So now that we have pulled out hope, you know that we're going to pull a sheet so we're gonna get out. Molded Simple. I'm assure you again, how set up. So we need the load at the bottom with fly y at the top. Imagine you're a piece of paper sitting nicely on top of this thief off. And then you got your special, and that goes over the top place. So we're going to polish out of that. Before we do this, we got to agitate. The pulse that's in the back hallway settles to the bottom. So what I do is I expect my things out like so. And then I just swish inside what we should allow. I feel like that's really cloudy. And then straight away, we're gonna go in without going to stop going down on a 45 degree angle until he is the photo, and then flatten out and pull up slept. We're gonna do that down 25 to the bottom flap. So you just want to leave it flat and two, you can't see any water only on the top, anyone, and then we're gonna tip it to just flat angles like a hot stripping from that one up. Just gonna let it drip until the drinks stop. Always completely. If you hold this on too much of an angle, then you might get your paper pulling in one. Cool that and they have money. So my dripping has always completely stopped. So now I'm going to take it up here and separate the Now this would expands in. Well, sometimes they get a little bit stuck. This'll actually pretty good because I've used so many times. But I like to have beginning use something like this to get them apostates taking a little easier. It could be a knife or even a screwdriver. So I just put it between the two images and then pull it up like this. And that helps since it great and I have my sitting on top. So next I'm gonna teach you how to 10 it out and making cookies 5. Couching: So now we're going to do the next step, which is called preaching. I love this. Would it start like couching? But it's not Kuching, but basically it's just the wicket turnout onto our coaching treat. So what about people here on our world? I'm going to place it down one inch, touching the preaching change, and then we're going to just gently flicking Reebok onto robbery. So then we're not gonna press it or anything, but from the same inch that you put down best. That's what I said. You're gonna pull up. I just do it once expiration like site. And then you can say that there's a few little bubbles that, but we're gonna trust them out with a microphone. 6. Pressing: on you use spun dirties how and just going to thought by pressing really softly. You don't want to repress these scenes down and make sure your distressing flat fits if you're close down. Otherwise, you press the scenes into the paper and it will have a scene Xterra across it. But you might want that that sense. So if this gets really wet, then we can just squeeze it out back into our bucket, actually saving that, and then we're going to do this little bit hot. So I, chief of six, I really used my whole weight. Okay, so we have started by hand pressing without, But now we're going Teoh, give it a really good press. So what this does is it allows all of the fibers to align and really looked to give up, uh, to make really strong. So we're going to fold out, blanket over the top e, control their increases and then about my rolling pin, get stops softly rolling everywhere in the pancreas and then get hot and finding that you're putting your whole wet behind this really pressing paper. But some nights pressed paper and then we're gonna go into the next section which will be drying 7. Drying: there's so many for ways that you can drawing a paper, I'm gonna show you five different ways and what results they're going to create. We're going to start with looking at the outside the way she's clustering, who's really sick. So actually, just leave your piece on your and go and hang it all on the line. Make sure that your pain started. Touch your makeup and also make sure that you don't try and peel your paper off beforehand because it's full of. But if you leave it on that that it should just that he had and stay on there and it's dry and you can fill it up. So the next method of drying is window drying, just probably my personal favorite method of drying. It creates a lot of slack is a pickup with one side is really screwed, and one that's a little bit more texture. So what we're gonna do is will take out paper over to our window. You don't want to just black window down fests, nice clean driving. And then through that on, like Sorry, make sure they're in our bubbles on your victories. Nice that he had to the window. Uh, we'll leave it on the window for about 24 hours and it should be done and smooth and peel off easily. This didn't do any diamond shoe windows. You should just be I would've walked away angry Xueju that is on the outfits So else that method of trying is old drying. This is very similar to the wiener dry, except that going to use the board we're going to do is just the same thing. Turn up, ground onto the board and flatten it down. You're gonna want a board that's not to absorb something like hardwoods. No, really good idea, because it will end up sticking to the board. So something like India plywood. Now we found that if you put this outside in the wind, it will generally float away. That's not so good. So in fires in front of the windows is a really good place to put. This drying is press trying. This will create you'll smurray. This flat seas of paper, however, is a little labor intensive and will take a lot longer. So we've got a press here. We actually really beautiful presses on. Now what's up about official designs competence them. But here, Goss I really think oppressively for a while you got my piece of paper and they are sandwiched between creation traits these dry future shakes on and I'm gonna put my paper on top just making sure that the shakes Piper sitting in the same spot and then that's the lost piece paper that I'm going next. So I'm gonna put a little stack of dry, aging sheets on top as well. And then I'm going to put my So now I'm going to use this depress shapes together. I have little wingnuts and they're going to go on to press, and that's just going to really sandwich this together. Now if you don't have a press you could use to bits of board and then put something really heavy on top leg, some bricks, wholesome, really heavy books that would do the job. So once I settle the wing, that's something that made it really tight. Supposedly, can I have to change? The protein shakes out every single day you can take up to a week, then they'll be done. They'll be perfect end. They'll be very dry and very flat and smooth and also very strong because of the pressing really alliance a little bit. It's five us on. It's really strong. So finally, drying method is called no restraint dry. This just means that we're not going to touch anything. We're just going to put it on. May be a winner seal or a bench. They're just gonna take it off. You're creating shapes. It's a place that virtually onto a windows seal or a bench, make sure it's in the sun. This will produce really, really wild piece of paper, ideal weekly and globally and very cool. If that's how you want your paper, that's great. But if you do this end, you decide you don't really want you to be so loved. You can always use just a nine and three that out afterwards, once it's dry. So what I do is place a tea towel or preaching shape over the top of the paper to protect the paint from the heat and then use an ID on a lawyer setting on. And I did that and it will get nice and flat. So that's old drying residents. They produce really beautiful different kinds of paper. I want you to experience with old for ones and see which one is your favorite and then go forth and make all of the 8. Troubleshooting: truly shooting. There are lots of things that can go wrong when you're during the Croft, especially when you're learning something new. Luckily, take my he's really figured so anything goes wrong. He's put it back into your bat and side against Odiah. So my paper has ripped because he can say love. It has stuck to the mode and some of the color of my preaching. She is because I was too wet, so may look like it's off. So but that's OK, because biking is really simple to six. So I was gonna take my preaching shapes. I'm laying it down. Thank God that's touched just and then you shake it. All of that paper should just come off and then saying with this motion So it'll attached that. I'm just gonna put it face down, sir, it's down and start submitted to much just avenged paper and and all the paper should come back up and go straight back into your back, ready to be reused 9. Clean Up: So we've made a bunch of pagan out, and it gets a point with the papers getting a little bit thinking that. So that means a the time to make a little bit more halt full plate. So I have all of that I want to make today, and I'm going to stop clean. So my mom Dhekelia first thing I want to do is clean that off now because although paper settles at the bottom, it's quite clean wash up at the top here. It's gonna use that to clean up my mold. Okay, so now the big clean, I'm gonna clean out my blends out. I'm just gonna years again. Some of the water from the top of this and the clean wash out without paper in this is gonna help loosen old that that has stopped blends ablaze. So give it always on and pulling that back into your So I'm happy with how clean my blender is because I just use this up. But if you're going Teoh, use this for your household. Make sure that you give this a really good wash with something, and then what I'm gonna do is take my that and pull the water out and I'm gonna do that for you. And what that senator is capture a with the pope that seem that at least I can use the pope again next time. This little conditionally going to about it on the pulp can be useful of it. Kind of crossed, like Mashaei. We'll use again for your next project. Well, it can just go in the compost if you're not going to make another piece. So if I have done this in the sink, when I would jury is I would get my strain up and I would just run it through the wash up and take the pulp app as many times as I can't until I think the water. It's pretty clean that way. I'm saving a bunch of the pope. It's possible before sending the water down the drain, you know? Listen, I hope you will want it down the drain because I don't block your drains. So if I miss doing that, when I would do you take a bucket on, get the water out and tip it into the garden instead. So now that we have drained of Alberta and saved hope, we're going, Teoh turned it into a hawk. We'll end up something like this. What we're gonna do is just spread it out on a piece cod bush and make sure that it's normal than about five millimeters fake. Otherwise, it'll get Modi as it drives so way do this so that it can be stored and used again for your next piece of paper. I just put this breaking apart and put it in my blender. You can circuit Teoh really get it nice and soft for Use it for the next time. And this is what we've prevented, Elia. And it's just very solid. Nice, easy, just still. So after we've done all of that, we just want to wipe everything down and pack everything away. We'll put out preaching sheets and a big stuffed into a washing machine and then hang them out to dry. So then I said dry, then pack everything away, really not state into information box, so it's a little ready for next time 10. Conclusion - What to do with paper: There are so many things that you can do with Piper and so many different ways to make it. You can see here that we've got a variety of different things. These a roll of my papers that I've made in old, different drying techniques is just black. It's take up this one I made, and it was just a nervous right drying. And then what? I did waas This same piece of paper. I ended out, and it's in fact with a few grazes. But my favorite thing to do with paper is to draw. Or you could do also things like make it into a book and sketch on it or tending into cause . We love making out persons cops out of time and you can see that there's a variety of you for prices here. We've got also the things that have colored paper pig with seems in a paper with petals in it. It's all so beautiful on we'll go into how to do those things, and I advance workshops. This sounds one of my favorites. It's got any bossed piece of oily and the green color is just sorry. Lovely. Okay, so well done on her thinking have enjoyed watching the paper. And then you get really stuff into this crops. And I'd love to see all the experiments that you do. Please, please, please, please. Priced on out gets to grand pricing on the Facebook group or even just email them to us. We love seeing what the community makes this all of the skills that we're trying to teach.