How to Make Recycled Paper

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You can make recycled paper out of old newspaper, both as a fun project for kids and as a way of creating your own paper for notes and other common household uses. All you need is the daily newspaper.

Things You'll Need

  • Wire coat hangers (one for each piece of paper you want to make at a time)
  • Used pantyhose (one for each piece of paper you want to make at a time)
  • Newspaper
  • Blender (preferably one you no longer use for food)
  • Sink or portable tub
  • Water
  • 2 tbsp. white glue
  • Iron
  • Bend the coat hangar into a square or rectangular shape.

  • Stretch the pantyhose over the hangar until the material is taut.

  • Tear up strips of newspaper and place them in the blender, along with enough water to get the material wet and pulpy.

  • Set the blender to high and turn it on. Blend it until there is no longer any recognizable paper, but only a pulpy mass.

  • Add more water if the blender seems to be struggling, and more paper as the mass grows bigger. You want the blender to be full of formless gray pulp.

  • Fill a sink or portable tub with 4 inches of water. Add the white glue and mix it by hand until the glue has dissolved.

  • Add the paper pulp to the sink or tub.

  • Use the hangar/pantyhose screen to scoop up a layer of pulp. Allow all of the water to drain out of it back into the sink or tub. You should be left with a thin layer of protean paper.

  • Set the hanger out into a sunny place to dry. The process should take several hours or longer, depending on the time or day and the heat of the sun.

  • Carefully peel the new paper off of the frame, checking to make sure it is completely dry before doing so.

  • Apply a hot iron to the paper to steam out any lingering moisture. The iron should be set to its highest setting.

Tips & Warnings

  • This process can be a little messy, especially the first few times you try it. Make your recycled paper in an area that can handle a little sloppiness, and plan time for cleaning up afterwards.
  • You can replace the coat hangar and pantyhose for more formal screen frames if you wish. They only need to fit into the tub you're using, and can be spared for the time it takes to dry the paper.
  • If you want to give the recycled paper some color, add a few drops of food coloring to the blender, or the external skin of an onion.

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