A3 paper can be a perfect size for posters, brochures or large scrapbook pages. With a little decoration, plain A3 paper can turn into a marvellous, personal and appealing work of art. Who says you need to spend lots of money on store-bought decorated paper? You can decorate your paper at home using simple methods which can create results even better than in the shops.
Prepare a pot of tea but instead of disposing of the tea bag use it to gently dab the moisture from it all over the paper, then leave to dry. Staining your paper with a tea bag can create an interesting, authentically antique feel. Different teas can achieve differing results; black teas create a darker, browner stain and herbal teas can create a greenish tinge. Ensure that the paper is completely dry before using. Tea stained paper can be an excellent basis for calligraphy writing, adding to the ageing effect.
Glue clippings from your favourite magazines and newspapers to the paper to form a collage. This can be a great foundation for decoration. Especially if you are creating a factual poster, using snippets of relevant images or text can be an appealing way to ornament your work.
Sponge-paint your paper using stencils for a creative and unique decor. Using a high-density square sponge, such as a make-up sponge, instead of a paintbrush can make the stencilled image more transparent and is easier to blend colours together. Using scissors, cut out your desired image from a piece of thick card and place the remaining stencil on the section of the paper you would like the image to be stencilled onto. Squeeze nickel-sized squirts of acrylic paint onto your palette, in the colours of your choice, and dab a square end of the sponge into one of colours, wiping off any excess paint; a little paint goes a long way! Hold your card stencil in place firmly with one hand and dab in the cut-out space with the sponge with the other. Pick up a little of another colour of paint and keep dabbing and blending until you are satisfied that the stencil of the image is complete. Then lift, don't slide, the stencil and move on to the next section of the paper to which you would like another similar image. Usually one or two repetitions of the image will be enough but it is up to you; you can always experiment on another piece of paper first.
Create a border to frame your work. There are several borders that you can create: huge varieties of stickers are easily bought from any craft store and can create instant borders; stamped borders are a versatile and can produce a fascinating result; and border punches can be cheaply purchased to garnish the edges using intricate designs. If you are a confident artist, drawing your own patterned border with glitter pens, ink pens or fine-liner pens adds an extremely personal touch which most certainly cannot be reproduced in a store.
Things you need
- A3 paper
- Used tea bag
- Old magazine or newspaper clippings
- Square, high-density sponge
- Acrylic paints
- Paint palette
- Piece of thick card
- Border punches