A Kraft-Tex and Tea Bag Paper Handmade Book by Lynne Moncrieff



Groan.....Another handmade book!
This time I have been playing with Kraft-tex to make the cover with teabag paper page inserts.  That's Crafty! Walnut Ink Crystals were used to stain the teabag paper page inserts, also to age the Kraft-tex and handmade paper and not forgetting a wee shipping tag.
Although I used a sewing machine in this project, it isn't necessary.  The handmade paper pieces on the cover could be adhered with adhesive and if wanting the decorative effect of stitching, make faux stitches with stencil, stamp or fineliner pen. 


Kraft-Tex Sampler Pack (working with Natural)
Large, Soft Brush
Bone Folder (HERE)
Sewing Machine
Brown Waxed Thread
Handmade Paper
Shipping Tag
Coconut Button


Full disclosure... I was working from a roll of Kraft-tex, however, the Sample Pack contains the Natural colour which I worked with. Each sheet in the Sample Pack is  8.5"x11", for this handmade book, the dimensions of the Kraft-tex cover is approx 7"x6".

I was working with unwashed Kraft-tex but as I prefer the appearance when it is washed, that is what I did. On the package I have, there are no instructions for washing so maybe it would be worth your time to Google for any hints and tips. I simply filled a basin with lukewarm water, allowing the Kraft-tex to sit in the water for a while.  On removing, I scrunched the Kraft-tex in my hands to distress it, then lay it to dry on a flat surface. Once dry, I then generously applied dissolved walnut ink crystals.  Allowing one side to dry before repeating the step on the other side.

In this photo I placed the walnut ink stained Kraft-tex beside some which had not been stained.

Tear Teabag paper to fit inside book cover. Ideally, if you manage to tear the paper to size at this stage, it will result in a lovely stained effect on the paper edges.

Walnut ink was applied to each panel of teabag paper. My preference is to mist the teabag paper with water before applying the walnut ink.

While I was working with the walnut ink I also stained a small shipping tag.

For the journal cover I utilized two pieces of handmade paper which had previously been prepared. I simply misted with water before applying the walnut ink and then I sprayed the Lustre Aubergine and Lustre Gold.

Now that everything has been stained, I moved onto machine stitched the two handmade paper panels to the cover. Firstly, the Kraft-tex cover was folded in half using a bone folder to provide a crisp fold.  Opening the cover so it lay flat and working with the outside of the cover upwards, I placed the two handmade paper panels onto the cover then set about machine stitching.

I have a lifelong, torrid relationship with sewing machines but I have stopped allowing it to deter me from achieving the very little that I can when sitting in front of my machine as I enjoy the outcome so much.

Next step, a simple three hole pamphlet stitch was used, binding the teabag paper inserts to the cover with waxed brown thread. Keeping the end of the thread long, allowed it to be wrapped around the closed journal a few times, to act as a closure.

This is looking down onto the open book.

Inside front cover has a small handmade paper panel, stained with walnut ink.

The centre of the book. I love the effects achieved with no effort, I simply allow air bubbles to form beneath the teabag paper as I apply mist of water and the walnut ink or in some areas I over-saturate the teabag paper with walnut ink.

Returning to the front cover of the journal..

Words from two Affirmations from Set 11  "ART" from "Fill your life with ART" and "Imagine" from "Imagine it...Create It" come together to form "ART Imagine it..."
This was simply embellished with a coconut shell button with the string ends from the shipping tag, threaded through the button's holes.

Thank you for enduring this lengthy blog post!  I appreciate there were many photos in this post but I wanted to give an wee insight into the process steps for making this book.  

Just to add that the Walnut Ink Crystals are available to purchase in two options: individually or in a pack along with Tea Bag Paper. The same goes for the Tea Bag paper which is available individually, in a pack with Walnut Ink Crystals and also a third open in the Speciality Paper Pack alongside Tyvek and Rice Paper.  

You Might Also Like


  1. This is amazing. Loved seeing the process for this rustic looking journal. Unusual techniques for the fun of creating. Thank You for sharing and wonderful inspiration Lynn

  2. Dear friend, I could look for ever on your beautiful photos, to see all the details of stained paper, the fantastic look of almost leather, you achieved by washing and crumbling the Kraft-Tex and staining it after with Walnut Ink. A gorgeous result , both outside and inside the book!!
    Also love the the handmade paper panels outside, and your sweet tag and button . <3 xxx

  3. An absolutely beautiful little book Lynne. The stained effects look stunning and the little finishing details really do add such a vintage look here. Wonderful!
    Fliss xx

  4. Incredible and beautiful Lynne! xx

  5. In a world without an art store within a hundred miles, I really appreciate your detailed photos. Nothing compares with "a visual" to be inspired when you cannot touch and see in person. The Flex-tex has the look of leather when you are finished with your magic touch. Really lovely. The little book is a treasure and I appreciate knowing you can purchase the raw items, which I have not had the opportunity to see before. I will search on the Internet to find these items in the U.S. Thank you for the share.

  6. Thanks, Lynne, for such great directions. I too am a sewing machine phobe because I know it's not the best thing for the machine! I love this leather look and always looking for new ways to create it. What are your thoughts on walnut crystals vs. pre-made sprays?

  7. I’ve just found you and i am so happy. I love your creations. No groans, here!


Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment on our blog, we really appreciate it.

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Like us on Facebook