Washi tape is a special kind of decorative tape, originating in Japan. While today it seems like such an integral part of a crafter’s arsenal, it was only created as recently as 2006!
The word “Washi” translates essentially to mean ‘paper’. However, unlike typical paper as we know it in the West, Japanese Washi papers tend to be far more delicate and lightweight. In the 14 years since the introduction to mass-produced washi tapes, there have been countless iterations and interpretations not just in Japan, but globally.
Of course, at Altenew, we also have our own unique spin on washi tapes (quite a few in fact), and with all these washi tapes, you may be thinking “Well…what should I do with them?”.
Decorate Journals and BooksWell! There are tons of crafts with washi tape that you can make. Here are a few washi tape ideas!
Adding a border with washi tape along the cover of a journal is easy and it can take a simple notebook and make it something that really feels like it’s yours. And washi tapes don’t just go well on the outside.
Zipping out a little roll of washi tape, you can bring life to your next bullet journal entry, mark an important date in your planner, or even cheer up your notes from your last lecture. The Sunflower Palette Washi Tape from Altenew would be great for this.
While it's nice to have all that lush pattern, you can also cut out singular elements! By rolling the tape out over a plain piece of cardstock, you can fussy cut around a bloom and use it in your next craft.
In fact, one of our designers did just this! Check out this edition of Creative Coloring with Erum on our blog to see just how she did it.
Definitely large enough to fill an entire background of a card. This can be especially helpful if you're looking to make several cards with consistent designs.
Layered Textures and Patterns
Washi tapes come in all kinds of colors and textures, so why not combine them?
Layering a glossy gold over a matte floral? Or a solid pink across a busy geometric pattern? It’s a great way to add a third dimension to your next craft.
Actually, one of our incredibly talented designers did just this! Check out this funky scrapbook layout by Lilith over on our YouTube channel.
Combine With Cardstock
One unique aspect of washi tapes is that they are often very thin, sometimes even translucent.
Instead of putting a washi tape over just a plain white cardstock, next time try using colored cardstock and let the color peek through the washi tape on the top.
One way to variate your die-cuts is to use washi tape to decorate your cardstock. Using the now decorated paper for your die-cuts, this adds a whole new element to your crafts with washi tape!
Markers and Washi TapeYou can also try mixing different patterns and layers for different effects and dimensions on your washi tape crafts! Our Card Design Team member, Aga, created this non-traditional holiday card featuring our washi tapes!
While all washi tapes have their own unique patterns, why not add your personal touch? Try using alcohol markers to add your own flourishes!
The texture of most washi tapes resemble paper and as such are very responsive to alcohol markers.
Sending a letter is such a loving gesture. Why not make it even more personal by decorating the envelope you sent it in?
Adding a loving border around the envelope is a perfect way to make a statement. And because it's a tape, you don’t have to worry about losing your embellishment in the mail.
Gift Bags/Gift Boxes
Similar to decorating envelopes, adding washi tape to the outside of a gift bag or a gift box is an easy way to add an extra touch to your next gift.
Using paper kraft bags paired with a strip of washi tape along the edge is a fun way to really add a personal touch.
A fun way to add a layer of depth to a card is to use die-cuts. But what if we worked a washi tape in there as well? Imagine using something like our Circle Quilt Cover Die on white cardstock, and a bold pattern like our Gold Splatter Navy Washi Tape peeking through the lattice from underneath? It sounds splendid!
Geometric PatternsDesign Team member Therese uses this exact technique! Check out her washi tape card on our blog!
Oh, this one’s fun. Of course, washi tapes have their own patterns, but what if you made a pattern with patterned washi tape?
You can use washi tape to easily follow along with a linear pattern of your own, making a herringbone or perhaps a crosshatch design. This really allows you to take a tape in your hand and create your own pattern, with their pattern!
Washi tapes are the perfect addition to a crafter’s arsenal. Altenew offers such a wide variety of washi tapes and it’s easy to see the full range of their versatility. And, with a little bit of creativity, you’ll be making all sorts of washi tape crafts in no time.