Mother Earth Living


Try This: Phonebook and Recycled Paper Bag Collage Wall Treatment

Recycled those old paper goods into a textured wall treatment.



1 Crumple and scrunch pieces of paper grocery bags or kraft packing paper, then tear them into pieces a little bigger than a business card. Avoid any areas on the bags that are heavily printed, as this can show through on the wall. Crumpling the paper softens it so it takes the glue better, and also gives the finished wall “veining” that will add to its character.
To get this antiqued leather effect for your walls, paste torn pieces of crumpled grocery bags onto primed wallboard with a mixture of Elmer’s glue and water.
2 Prime your wall surface and mask off the edges. Mix 2 parts water with 1 part white glue. Using a stiff paintbrush, paint a section of the primed wall with the glue mixture and apply a piece of paper. Thoroughly coat each piece with the glue mixture, pressing firmly with the brush to get rid of air pockets. Add another piece of paper, overlapping each new piece slightly over the old and making complete contact with the wall surface. Work this way over the entire wall. This technique is very forgiving; you can stop in the middle for a rest and pick it up later.
4 To soften the acid-yellow color, ­collage over the Yellow Pageswith torn pieces of white tissue paper. These can be a little larger so the collaging goes very fast. Don’t cover the area too perfectly; let layers overlap so that you get a pleasing mottled affect. Start with about 2 layers of tissue, let them dry, then see if you want to add more. The tissue is barely obvious when wet, but once dry, its softening and whitening effect is quite dramatic.

















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