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Painting On Parchment

Updated April 17, 2017

The versatility of parchment craft means you can create lacy and delicate effects for greeting card toppers or scrapbook pages or works of art suitable for wall hangings. Parchment craft paper in its natural state has a slightly grey colour and is similar to thick tracing paper. Colour is added to the relevant section of the embossed pattern in various ways, which include using specially developed parchment inks, colouring pencils, oil pastels or blendable felt tip pens. The easiest way to paint on parchment is to use blendable felt tip pens.

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  1. Rub the felt tip on the plate to transfer a little of the colour.

  2. Dip the paintbrush into the water, then blot the bristles on the kitchen towel to remove any excess water. The brush should be barely damp. Roll the bristles of the brush in the colour on the plate, so the bristles form a sharp point as they pick up the colour.

  3. Paint the colour on the parchment pattern where you want the colour. Press down on the brush lightly to flatten the bristles to avoid sharp lines of colour. Work the brush in small circles to fill the entire pattern area.

  4. Rinse the brush in clear water and blot on the kitchen towel before picking up a second colour from the plate palette. Apply the second colour as you did the first, allowing the two colours to blend where they meet if this is the desired effect.

  5. Tip

    The ink from felt tip pens may dry on the plate, but will dampen and activate again when it is rubbed with a damp paintbrush. Because the ink can be blended, it is possible to achieve gentle colour changes and shading effects such as those found in artworks created with traditional acrylic, oil or watercolour paints.


    Blot the paintbrush on the kitchen towel to remove most of the water because water and parchment paper do not mix well. Too much water may cause the parchment paper to buckle.

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Things You'll Need

  • Blendable felt tips
  • Plate
  • Paintbrush
  • Water
  • Kitchen towel

About the Author

Deborah Jones started her freelance writing career in 1990. Her work has appeared in The Writer's Forum, "Reader's Digest" and numerous D.C. Thomson magazines. Jones has a Bachelor of Arts in creative writing and a postgraduate certificate in education, both from the University of Derby.

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