Paper Top Tutorial

Paper table top 10.26.15

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This offers a fabulous finish when done right! Here is a quick little tutorial on using paper as a new faux top. The great side to this is, using different crumpling techniques and different stains can give you many varied outcomes! The only limit is your fear to experiment. After all, it's only paper. If you don't like it, change it! Recipe and instructions are on the photos as you browse them. Hope it helps and have fun with it!!!
Time: 60 Minutes Cost: $45 Difficulty: Easy
  • Here is the final look when applied to a piece of furniture. I have also seen a great tutorial on Hometalk here using it for flooring
  • Here is a closeup after 4 coats of a polyurethane
  • I chose to use a woodglue that dries clear, you can use almost any crafting glue though. I figured the wood glue would dry harder.
  • The jist of this technique is to use brown paper, or paper bags. Crumple them up and soak them in a 50-50 glue to water ratio, then smooth them out how you want them to appear on your piece.
  • Here it is once the paper has been placed and waiting to dry. Make sure when you are smoothing the paper onto the surface that you really take the time to make sure all the air bubbles are out.
  • Once it has been applied, simply walk away for 24 hours and let it dry and cure and then choose any stain you like and stain it. And again, walk away for 24 hours and let it cure. If you want it darker, add more stain after.
  • I stripped the top right clean to allow the glue to seep into the wood grain for better adhesion. I'm not sure how much of a difference it makes in the long run, but this was just a personal choice.
  • It REFUSED to open! hence why I got the piece so cheap. however, with pieces this old, the secret is, simply putting the drawers in the right hole! Once they were out, they went back in smoothly and open fine now!
  • Mama Faye
    Mama Faye Cottondale, AL
    Using paper to do a desk, even more floors just blows my mind. I want sooooo to try this.
  • Randlyn Reinhart
    Randlyn Reinhart Rancho Santa Fe, CA
    I love the leather like vintage look this creates. Thank you for sharing this great idea.
  • Linda Lee
    Linda Lee Rollingstone, MN
    I used this technique on my kitchen walls! We still have the old plaster walls which were showing lots of wear and tear. We plan to do a complete remodel, and that is a few years out. Absolutely love how easy this is, how cheap its, and also the varying
  • Kelley Aho Phillips
    I LOVE it!!! I have an old cherry desk and the top of it is a mess! I've been wracking my brain trying to figure out what to do with it. Perfect, affordable solution and it looks fantastic!
  • Samme
    Samme Benton, AR
    A desk of my sons will get this treatment! He got water on it and it bubbled in a few places. I'm gonna strip that baby down like you did and use the bag technique! (May put a glass over it all for better (kid) protection! Thanks for the awesome post!
Gypsy Barn

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