How to Make Paper From Wood

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Things You'll Need

  • Wood

  • Wood plane

  • Blender

  • Food coloring

  • Bleach

  • Water

  • Screen

Wood became the prominent source for paper-making in the 19th century.
Image Credit: abadonian/iStock/Getty Images

Sometimes, that perfect piece of paper is utterly elusive, whether you're making a scrapbook or writing a love letter. Fortunately, such situations present you with a great opportunity to make your own piece directly from wood. While the process will result in an unrefined quality and may be rather heavy, you can still have a lot of fun experimenting with different kinds of wood until you find your ideal recipe.


Step 1

Choose what kind of wood you want to use to make your paper. It's better to start off with softwoods since the fibers are not as tough and tight as those in hardwoods. Think about starting out with scrap pine you have around the workshop. For an organic, natural look, collect fallen tree branches and pieces of firewood.


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Step 2

Break the wood down into small pieces using a wood plane. These should be thin strips that can easily be broken down. Break the strips down to about 1 inch in length or less using a utility knife. You're creating wood pulp, so don't worry about making the pieces too small. If you don't want pieces of bark or knotted wood in your paper, remove these fragments.


Step 3

Place the wood pieces into a blender and add water. Ensure the wood is completely submerged. Blend the wood pieces until you have pulverized them into a watery pulp. The pulp itself should be the consistency of a wet powder, unless you want a rougher-looking paper, in which case you should blend it for a slightly shorter time.


Step 4

Add bleach to your pulp slurry to create white paper. Let it sit while the bleach takes effect. For colored paper, add food coloring or another kind of pigment to the mixture.

Step 5

Put the screen into a baking pan and place them both in the sink to avoid a mess. Pour your pulp slurry into the baking pan, making sure the mixture is distributed evenly. Pull the screen out of the baking pan. The water has gone through the screen, leaving the pulp on a sheet by itself. Let it dry to reveal your piece of paper.


Churning wood into pulp may dull your blender’s blades significantly.


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