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Vellum Paper Basics-Tips And Ideas

Updated on May 3, 2020
linfcor profile image

Professional scrapbook artist, paper crafter, and author, I have taught people how to make family memories into legacies for 20 years.

Vellum can be used to make wonderful flowers. It can be started as a white or neutral, then be colored with any color you would like, once it has been die cut
Vellum can be used to make wonderful flowers. It can be started as a white or neutral, then be colored with any color you would like, once it has been die cut | Source

How To Use Vellum Paper-Tips And Ideas

Vellum is a translucent paper that is underused by most scrapbook artist and card makers. It's an elegant paper that can adapt itself to lots of different techniques. Because it's a different type of paper, it has to be handled differently than other papers, but it does adapt itself to many themes. It can add lots of dimension to your scrapbook pages and greeting cards.

It was originally a fine parchment made of calfskin or lambskin. Later the parchment was imitated with the heavy off white quality paper that we use today.

Plain white vellum is probably the most recognizable by most crafters. But why just limit yourself to the traditional white? Now available are more patterned vellum paper, colored velum, vellum sayings and even vellum stickers.

Vellum is easy to work with, but has to be handled with care. The results of using it can be very rewarding ! Store your vellum sheets flat in plastic bag between two sheets of cardboard to keep it fresh and clean

Vellum Tip

Use vellum to stimulate water in an image. It is effective as a layered piece over another image. Use ink or markers to color your vellum a color that looks like an ocean or sea

Colored Vellum Paper

Grafix 8-1/2-Inch by 11-Inch Vellum, 12-Pack, Assorted Color
Grafix 8-1/2-Inch by 11-Inch Vellum, 12-Pack, Assorted Color
I have used this assorted pack multiple times. The paper is very well made and it is a great way to get started with vellum, This economical pack has 12 colors that give you a wide variety in one purchase. You can often buy vellum as single sheets or multi packs.

Vellum Ideas

Think outside of the box and you will find a lot of different ways to use your vellum

  1. Give patterned paper a soft and custom look by placing clear vellum over it
  2. Mat A Photo With Vellum I love adding a vellum mat, especially when I am using a detailed patterned paper. I need to put a mat between my photo and the pattern, vellum is just the right touch. It's soft and allows some of the pattern to show but more softly, so that the pattern on the paper does not distract from the photo.

  3. Make A Transparent Pocket For Memorabilia, Tags And Journal Notes-These little see through pockets will show a little what's inside and encourage someone to look to find a hidden treasure
  4. Make Border Strips With Vellum Gives a nice soft work for all your pages . You can rip it. cut it or use decorative scissors to create a custom edge. This is a great idea for both scrapbook pages and greeting cards.
  5. Partition A Page With Vellum Use vellum to partition a page. You could partition in halves, quarters or thirds

  6. Vellum Flowers If you have an electronic cutter, you could cut vellum flowers
  7. Vellum can be used to simulate glass in things like a bowl or jar
  8. Use Multiple Colors of Vellum To Create An Ombre Effect-You can do this with cards , scrapbook pages, art journals and more

Vellum Tip

Did you know that vellum can be punched and embossed? Why not try something different and use your vellum in a different way?

Scotch Vellum Tape (005)
Scotch Vellum Tape (005)
Vellum tape is a must for everyone who uses vellum. This tape works perfectly for any vellum project. This is a tape that will not show through your vellum. You can use large strips for things like scrapbook titles. Smaller strips can be used for card projects.

Stamping On Vellum

The very first thing to understand about stamping on vellum is that no matter what ink you use, it will take longer for the ink to dry. Your craft heat gun will speed up the drying progress. Be careful not to use the gun too close to the vellum as it could cause burn marks. You could hold the vellum with a pair of long tweezers.

Allow the heat gun to warm up before you use it, then use the gun on and off the piece. That will allow the piece to warm up enough to dry but not get crispy.

Always blow it dry from behind. That is to say, never use the heat gun on the side of the paper where it has been stamped. That way the ink will stay exactly where you put it.

Want to create a muted effect on your vellum? Use a water based dye ink. It creates a softer look. You could also use distressed inks and distressed oxide inks to create a soft look on your projects.

Make sure to wash your hands before you use or craft with vellum. Any glue, ink or oil that you have on your hands will transfer to the vellum and cause stains and smudges

How To Adhere Vellum

Adhering vellum requires special handling, but the results are very pleasant. There are a few options for adhering vellum to other paper. For ease of use, especially with beginners, we suggest that you use vellum tape or glue dots.

Never use wet glues with vellum as it will cause the paper to curl

Other options include:

* Use a plain glue stick and cover the glue with a sticker or die cut

* Attach the vellum to the scrapbook paper with photo corners

* Use eyelets to attach the vellum to cardstock

* Use stitches to adhere vellum

* Use brads to attach the vellum to your cardstock

* Photo corners are great for square pieces of vellum

Here's a great trick to make is easier to apply vellum. Apply the adhesive to the card stock or the surface that you are woirking on. Then attach the vellum. Let the adhesive become tacky and then apply the vellum. You will get a much cleaner look

Vellum Tip

Any ink applied to vellum to take longer to dry, so allow extra time before you "handle" any computer generated printables. If you are "hand writing " on vellum, use a Zig writer or a Sakura permanent pen

More Vellum Tips And Ideas

  • Use Your computer to print sayings, mottos and journaling on vellum paper
  • Want a colorful background, rubber stamp on vellum paper
  • Tear vellum sheets to create a softer look
  • Crumple, fold and crease your vellum to give it a different look
  • Cut your vellum with decorative scissors to give it a distinctive edge.
  • Punch the edge of a strip of vellum with a border punch
  • Use vellum to create a pocket on your scrapbook pages
  • If you are going to stamp on vellum use a more permanent ink like stazon
  • Use sharp scissors or blades when working with vellum. The heavy weight of the paper will dull your blades quickly.
  • Just like scissors, make sure that your punches are sharp too when working with vellum. If your punches are dull, punch them with aluminum foil to sharpen them.
  • Set a dampened sponge in a dish & lightly wet your punched vellum before working it. Keeps it from tearing. (Works for embossing Vellum in the Cuttlebug too--though the moisture might make large pieces curl on you but you can let it dry in the folder (under a book maybe?)
  • Journal on Vellum-Use a vellum pen to write your thoughts

Tips On Cutting Vellum

Vellum has a slick finish to it. If you are using a craft knife to cut it, make sure to hold the paper firmly. An alternative to cutting it with a craft knife would be to hold it down with low tack tape.

How To Use Vellum

Vellum Sayings - Add Quotes, Statements And Titles In Vellum

I love using vellum sayings and quotes to add something special to my scrapbook pages and cards. They are easy to use and cut to add just about anything. Consider making tags for scrapbook pages and cards. You will find lots of uses for these vellum sayings. They are a good bang for the buck

Multi-layering of vellum makes a very soft look. It could be used for baby pages, weddings and feminine pages

Dry Embossing On Vellum

How To Stencil On Vellum

You can get a very special image on vellum with a stencil. This project is for a greeting card, but you could adapt it for a scrapbook page or a journal


Craft mat or parchment paper

Anti static powder tool


Stencil of your choice

Embossing powder

Versa mark ink

Foam applicator tool ( round tool used to apply ink)

Heat tool

Copics or Spectrum Noir Markers

Low tack tape

  1. Cut the piece of vellum to the size that you would like to use on your card
  2. Place a craft mat or parchment paper on your work surface
  3. Use the anti static powder tool across the paper
  4. Apply the stencil to the paper
  5. Tape the stencil to the paper
  6. Apply the Versa mark ink with the foam tool
  7. Cover the entire stencil
  8. Remove the stencil carefully
  9. Place a piece of paper under the vellum
  10. Apply the embossing powder to the vellum
  11. Tap off the excess embossing powder and return it to the jar
  12. Hold the vellum with the tweezers
  13. Apply the heat tool to the back and front of the vellum ( make sure not to go too close or the vellum may burn. Use short bursts of heat until all the powder has been heated.
  14. Once the powder has been embossed and the paper has cooled, tuen the vellum to the back side
  15. Using the alcohol marker or markers of your choice, color the entire back of your paper. Do not use excess pressure. Make sure that if you use two colors, you get a good blend.
  16. Once the ink is dry, apply to your card.

Printing On Vellum

  • Use vellum that is made for injet printing if you are going to print a title, saying or journaling saying
  • Vellum is not inexpensive. So always proof for spelling and punctuation before you print
  • Let the ink dry before you touch it or you will smear it, for sure. The drawback to vellum is the amount of time that it takes to dry. But if you have patience, you will be pleased with the results
  • Allow a one inch margin around your text to allow the rollers of your printer to grab the paper.
  • Increase the spacing between letters so that the print does not smear.
  • Lift each page as it finishes carefully and set it aside to dry

Writing On Vellum

If you are like me, you like to do handwritten journaling and titles. But vellum can be challenging when trying to write or draw on. Most pens and markers with not either write or dry on vellum.

Gel pens and markers sold specifically for scrapbooking are typically a good choice.

High-quality colored pencils or chalks typically will work on vellum to color in stamped images. Color from the back if you want a softer look.

Place a piece of lined paper under your vellum if you are doing handwriting or journaling. It will keep your lines straight.

Experiment with what you have in your stash to see what works

Coloring Vellum

You can use just about anything to color your vellum. Watercolors alter the color of whatever vellum you have. Distress inks can also be used as a nice border or to change the color alltogether

Water Color Vellum

Storing Vellum

Vellum Paper is very delicate. Ink stains and creases easily shown up on it. Vellum needs to be handled and stored with care. When storing keep it flat in a plastic bag and between two heavy pieces of card stock to reduce the chance of creasing or staining.

© 2014 Linda F Correa

Have You Used Vellum On Your Scrapbook Pages? - Are You A Vellum Fanatic?

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    • iamradiantrose profile image


      3 years ago

      I'm intrigued where to get colored vellum. I love using vellum but I have only seen the off-white...Great hub, thank you!

    • linfcor profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda F Correa 

      6 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

      @Craftymarie: Try vellum tape or dots. See my remarks above. Thanks for stopping by !

    • linfcor profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda F Correa 

      6 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

      @psiloveyou1: I know that vellum is a challenge, but the results are so very pretty. I tend to use the special vellum tape and dots for my projects. I use vellum for photo mats and journaling mats. The adhesive is hidden. I also use it in a title layering technique. I know that it's fussy to work with, but I love the colors. I have just learned how to use a technique with vellum and embossing folders. I could see where that technique could be used on scrapbook pages. More to come

    • psiloveyou1 profile image


      6 years ago

      Hiding the adhesive is the hardest part. I think that's why people don't use vellum very often.

    • Craftymarie profile image


      6 years ago

      Your section on how to adhere Vellum is really important because it isn't the easiest thing to place on a project. I normally stick mine underneath some other embellishments where it won't be seen, I've also used brads too as you suggested.


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