June 5, 2012

Paper Mache Recipe

Thought I would include a photo of the finished tree since it looks cool!
I recently made a tree trunk for a church play.  While working on creating it I came across this recipe for paper mache, and I loved it, so I thought I would share.  I've used it a couple of times now and it makes a nice strong finish that sticks well.

Paper Mache
1 cup flour
1 1/2 cups water (cold or warm)
1/2 cup white school glue
pinch of salt (important in humid climates to prevent mold)

Place ingredients in a bowl and whisk.  It should be a syrupy consistency and can be tinted.  Then tear newspaper strips about 1" to 1 1/2" wide and around 6" long.  Dip them in the paper mache, squeegee them off with your fingers and place in alternating directions on your object.  You can do several layers to make it strong.  I like to use brown craft paper because it is thicker than newspaper so you don't have to do as many layers for a strong finish.  Let it dry overnight.

If you need more detailed directions, just Google it.  There are even videos on how to do it.

Here are the photos of my projects that I used the paper mache on.  Unfortunately, I keep forgetting to take a photo of them before they are painted.
The trunk before the paper mache went on.

My son is almost 6'5" so you can see how big this tree is!  The trunk is made with cardboard cement form tubes from Home Depot.  I used cut up pieces of foam pipe insulation and pool noodles for the raised knots.



The pig pinata.  You can see it created a pretty smooth finish.  Painted by my daughter.
Don't ever be afraid to try paper mache.  It's really easy and a great project for kids too.

2 comments:

Heather Mauricio said...

Your tree came out amazing... such detail in the paintwork! Great job! How did the top part of the tree come about? Its pretty amazing too. Im just the loony to try and creat something like this in my kids room for a night light type deal. Its so beautiful...

Lunar daughter said...

The top part of the tree was made by someone else in another state and borrowed. It was fabric in three different layers hung from the stage curtain supports. They had Christmas lights strung around the back side with holes through for the lights. Quite an undertaking! Glad I only had to do the trunk (without ever seeing the top until delivery day, so the height was all a guess!)