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The Art of Paper Mache

Updated on July 8, 2013
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cactus paper machepaper mache bowlsdress form paper mache
cactus paper mache
cactus paper mache | Source
paper mache bowls
paper mache bowls | Source
dress form paper mache
dress form paper mache | Source

Paper mache is a form of art that make use of papers to form a sculpture. This is occasionally pieces of paper or tissue fastened on an outline to form a figure. Paper mache has been utilized to make boxes, trays, small painted cases and different decorative forms. It is a cost effective building project that only requires your creativity in doing so. It is frequently used as a hobby more than an industrial project. It is employed in makin dolls, puppets and a range of sculptures



Newspaper , gawgaw paste, white water-based latex paint or other desired color of latex, paint, brush, water, towel or rag, scissors


  1. Prepare the materials needed. Lay newspaper in your working area.
  2. Create an armature of an animal that you’re going to make using wooden scraps, metal or wine. Use balls of newspaper to make the body, legs and head.
  3. Tape on wads of crumpled paper to fill out the body.
  4. Tear strips of newspaper and dip them one by one in your paste mixture.
  5. Cover the entire body with the strips of newspaper, adding only one layer at a time, make six to ten layers to build up the figure of the form you want.
  6. Dry the paper sculpture under the sun to make it dry and hard.
  7. When it has dried, paint the figure all over with white latex paint.
  8. When the first coat of paint has dried, paint a second coat using bright colors. Paint other details like leaves, flowers and free-form shapes.
  9. Let the paint dry and your paper mache is ready.

A unique paper mache of a half bodied hallow
A unique paper mache of a half bodied hallow | Source

Paper Mache in the Philippines

Paete, Laguna, being one of the most artistic communities in the Philippines is famous for its word carvings of religious images and furniture. The name “Paete” comes from the word “paet”, the tagalong word for chisel.

Paete folk have a tradition of arts and crafts. One of these is the “taka” the paper mache structures of animals.

"Taka" Paper Mache in the Philippines

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fast easy paper mache recipe by epicfantasy of youtube

Paper Mache Using Balloons for Kids


  1. Balloon
  2. Newspapers or paper for recycling
  3. White glue or paste
  4. Shallow container

Safety Guidelines

  1. Children below ten yrs. old should only use scissors suited for them
  2. An adult's guidance is needed in making this.


1. Blow a balloon until it reach the desired size. Kids should only make smaller balloons to prevent it from exploding. Ask your parent's help if you don't know how to do this.

2. Tear some pieces of paper in relatively large size enough to cover the balloon three times. I advised you to distinguish the colors of paper to use per layer. Newspaper and manila paper is better to use for the first layer, then just have the remaining layers colored.

3. Make your own adhesive by mixing white glue with water. You can also make your own paste by mixing water and gluten flour then heating it to the desired consistency.

4. Start pasting the pieces of paper on the balloon layer per layer. Make sure to cover the whole balloon. Let the pieces of paper overlap one another to make sure that the mache will not easily be broken.

5. Let it dry completely which may take two to three days. But, if you're in a hurry, You can make use of a blower.

6. After drying, you can now decorate it. Start with a white base so that the color that you'll put will be even. I suggest you to draw faces on the balloon to make it look quirky and cute.

balloon paper mache
balloon paper mache | Source

paper mache tutorial by theofficialAY100 of youtube

do you find paper mache making interesting?

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    • divineadriano profile image

      Divine Grace Adriano 4 years ago from philippines

      thank you for the appreciation. Yeah! you and your son should try this. Although it's a little bit messy but it's sure fun.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 4 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      Interesting hub, I think I should recommend my son to join in the fun of making paper mâché of his favorite item, a ball! Seems easy to make and artistic photo with unique craft, voted up