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Cheap n' Crafty: $4 DIY Art with Washi Tape

Posted by Alexandra C. | Thursday April 12, 201210 comments

Being the crafty chick that I am, I love to check out crafting blogs, stores and even books for ideas and inspiration. I started hearing about Washi Tape around the blogosphere and had to check out it out for myself. Washi Tape is a decorative, Japanese masking tape that been gaining popularity because of how multi-purpose it is. In fact, just check out this gallery of impressive DIY projects using it:

(images via howsweettreats.com, japanistic.com, i-do-it-yourself.com)
So, I decided to try my hand at a DIY Washi project. I wanted to do something quickly, that required minimal skill and most importantly, I wanted it to look fabulous and be super cheap. I got the idea for Washi Tape art from this blog post. I loved how simple the design is and how it could look really professional even if it took you only a few minutes. Here's my own interpretation of the picture:

This is my first attempt, so be kind! I made one or two boo-boos but overall, I think it isn't too bad and put together in the frame, I'm pretty please with my handiwork. Of course, the most impressive part of this craft is the price: $4.00 (tax included). I paid about $2, before tax for the tape, which was on clearance. Normally, at the craft store I go to it costs about $4. The picture frame I purchased from the dollar store at $1.25- bargain! 

Want to make one of your own? Here's what you'll need:

Picture Frame
Washi Tape 
Cardstock or Plain, White Paper
Scissors, Pencil and Eraser

Step 1: Dismantle frame

Take apart your frame, we'll replace the insert that comes with it, with your cardstock or white paper. 
Step 2: Find center point

Using a ruler, trace a line down the middle of the paper vertically and horizontally. Find the center point. My frame came with an inner cardboard frame, so I also made sure to outline this so I knew how much space I had. 

Step 3: Trace arrows

Using the center point and your border as a guideline, trace out the arrows for your artwork. Your arrows should be evenly spaced apart and you should leave space on sides and top and bottom of paper. Be sure to measure how long your lines are so you know how long to cut the tape. 

Step 4: Tape


Cut pieces matching the length of the arrow. When you get to the point, cut on an angle. 

Step 5: Tape, part 2

When putting down tape on the other side, I found it helpful to trace a line horizontally, from the highest point of the first taped side. This way, I could see where my next taped line should hit. 

Final Product 

It took me about two tries to really get the hang of this so I suggest doing a practice test first. Also, have fun with this artwork. I liked the simple design of this one but try doing lines, letters, polka dots or any other pattern! Washi Tape also comes in about a million designs so try out different ones or mix and match. You could also try taping your basic frame too.

Is this something that you'd DIY? Have you heard of Washi before or used it? 
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on October 02, 2013  Destiny3662  429 said:

thanks for linking the blog you got your idea from!

on May 01, 2012  sirenstarlight  7,243 said:

I've never heard of washi tape before, but your craft looks great :)
If i come across it, I might try this myself :) I love polka dots, so that'll probably be what I go with :)

on May 01, 2012  Vlicious  3,810 said:

I'm with Alize! I had never heard of it! What a simple and easy way to decorate something! Great tip!

on April 12, 2012  AlexJC  50 said:

@shiorim You're my muse ;)

on April 12, 2012  shiorim  982 said:

haha made some washi art I see ;)
looks super cute! I think a chevron version would also look chic

on April 12, 2012  Bren  25,339 said:

This reminds me many years ago I had a old plain white square Ikea table that just looked bland.So I used tape like that(in black) and went clockwork all around the table with these strips it looked really cool afterwards almost looked like a optical illusion.They look very pretty around the candle holders and clear vase good job Alex :)

on April 12, 2012  GoneBatty  3,196 said:

I love the candle holders!!! So trying this!!

on April 12, 2012  takoda  28,648 said:

I haven't heard of this until now, but I like it. You're just so crafty Alex.

on April 12, 2012  Aliza  13,970 said:

Never heard of the Washi tape before but I love the ideas and its multipurpose. Great way to dress up those candle holder and have art work for your desk! Thanks Alex!

on April 12, 2012  shuey  2,784 said:

Never heard of "washi" before. Love it though. Thanks for the idea Alex

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