Sunday, April 29, 2012

coffee staining pages

This is my tut for coffee staining pages already in a book. It turns out it was more work that I originally thought! I've stained individual pages in the past with no issues. I made this tut for a Magical Art Journal swap, which can be seen here.

Items needed:
  • your book to be stained
  • instant coffee
  • vanilla extract (optional)
  • ground cinnamon (optional) 

First off, fill your sink with hot water. (no picture of this). This will help the coffee to dissolve. It only needs to be 3-4 inches deep.
Next, add a couple tablespoons of the coffee and stir to dissolve. At this point, you can add the vanilla and/or cinnamon to give it a smell.

I got all these at my local Dollar Tree.

This is the coffee and some vanilla in the sink. It's actually darker than what you see here. The flash lightened the water. 

Next grab your book. This is mine and the front and back covers are covered with scrapbook pages.  

Now the tricky part comes. This works easier if you have ties on your book.

As you can see here, I already had some in mine and used them to tie the book covers back. If you don't have ties on yours, you're actually going to have to stand at the sink. Unless you don't mind the cover getting stained to. For this, I would do all of this before altering. Obviously. But this tut is more for those who've already altered the covers and decided to stain them later. Like me!!

Dip the pages in the coffee.At first I did just what you see in the picture then hung it up to dry. I went back a little while later to check on it and realized that some of the pages in the center didn't get wet. So I had to take my time, opening the book and dipping it in. Yes, the colors of the lines will run.

I decided to let me book soak for 20 minutes to make sure the pages got nice and wet. Instead of standing there for 20 minutes, (and so I could write this out in the meantime!) I tied mine up like so. Then I set the timer. I just took it out of the sink and I laid it down so that it could drip back into the sink. I was going to leave it hanging, but with all those pages soaking wet, it was kinda heavy and I didn't want my ties to come off and the whole book to fall into the water and then I'd have to start all over.

Now I'm going to let it dry for the next few days. I'm going to let it dry naturally, which will cause the pages to get poofy. If you don't want poofy pages, you could put the covers in plastic (maybe plastic shopping bags) so they don't get wet. Then close the book and put something heavy on it. This will help to calm down the pages a little, but it won't go back to the way it was before it got wet.

Once my book is dry in a few days, I will update this post with more pictures.

Update April 30th:
Ok update on MY book: not sure if this is going to work. Not all the pages got wet. And I re-soaked them and now they look like a hot mess!! The pages that are more towards the inner part of the book look more like someone accidentally spilled something on them. Also, the pages aren't that dark. Then again, they aren't completely dry yet. I have the book sitting in the almost 80 degree sun right now. Also, the spine of the notebook did get wet and I'm afraid with repeated openings that it will come apart.

I will keep updating until the book is completely dry. But if I had to grade it now, it would definitely get an F for failure.

1 comment:

  1. trust me, it can still be saved! in crafting, many failures turn into the loveliest of successes, if you use what mistakes you made. a mistake can open your mind to processes of art you hadn't even considered!