If you’re reading this, then chances are you love stationery. And if you love stationery, then you have probably heard of or seen washi tape everywhere. You may have even questioned why it is so popular! After all, aren’t decorative tapes pretty much the same?
As it turns out, there’s more to washi tape than meets the eye. If you’ve ever wondered what all the hype was about regarding washi tapes, then look no further. Here, we explain your burning question (“What is washi tape?”) and why it continues to be so well-loved.
What is washi tape?
Washi tape is a decorative paper masking tape that is extremely versatile. It is different from regular tape in that it is made of natural fibers like hemp and bamboo. This makes them relatively inexpensive. It also allows manufacturers to produce them in hundreds of different colors and patterns, such as our Hanami design washi tape.
Washi tape is easy to stick on various surfaces, including metal, plastic, and wood. They are also easy to remove without causing any damage.
Where did the name “washi” come from?
The term “washi” comes from the words “Japanese paper,” specifically referring to describe the paper that uses local fiber and is processed by hand in the traditional manner. Washi tape originated in Japan from a masking tape company called Kamoi Kakoshi. Their washi tapes were eventually beautified and more colors were released into the market. As the product gained more traction, even more colors and patterns were produced. Today, washi tape can be purchased all over the world.
How is washi tape made?
Washi tape is created using traditional Japanese rice paper. It is made using strong, natural fibers from the surrounding foliage of bamboo, kozo (mulberry), rice, and mitsumata plants. In fact, over 90% of washi paper today is made using mulberry fibers.
To start, cold, pure, fresh running water is required for the production of washi paper. The fibers are then joined together by moving a wire frame in a vat that contains chemical solution and pulp. The fibrous sheet sticks onto the frame, after which it is removed and laid on a flat surface. It is then decorated before being left to dry.
On the other hand, the natural adhesive is made from different brands of Malaysian rubber that is kneaded and blended into a soft material. Resin is mixed into the adhesive and the thin glue is used for the tape backing.
What is so special about washi tape?
As mentioned earlier, washi tape does not come from tree pulp, like Western paper does. It is fashioned from Japanese shrubs and rice, which are highly renewable sources and biodegradable, too!
It is also very easy to use washi tape. The adhesive is strong enough but does not ruin surfaces when the tape is removed, allowing it to be used again and again. Washi tape is also easy to tear by hand, which makes them suitable for children as well. This type of tape is also easy to write on even though it is waterproof and heatproof.
Things you can do with washi tape
There are many things you can do with washi tape! Here are just a few examples:
You can use washi tape as decorative tape for walls, whether you’re doing just a section or the entire wall. The best part is that these tapes can be removed and rearranged without damaging the paint underneath. Try something like this Coffee Steam washi tape design, which is just one example of a custom washi tape design that you can get.
Washi tape is especially fun to use for your journaling needs. Using washi tape encourages self-expression and ultimately empowers your self-development. Try using it on paper that’s thick enough, like Clairefontaine, to minimize wrinkles and rips when you remove the tape. Have fun with different washi designs, even if they’re for your eyes only!
Arts and crafts
Perhaps you’re a fan of creating art for the sake of it! You can do washi tape crafts and use them as excellent addition to your arsenal of arts and crafts tools. These can be used for scrapbook tapes and others.
Those who are a fan of pressing plants into their notebooks will love washi tape because it doesn’t rip paper or delicate plant fibers when removed (carefully, of course).
Gift wrappers and stickers
Are you out of ideas for how to wrap gifts this holiday season? Try the larger rolls of washi tape to decorate simple boxes. This also prevents wastage.
The Bottom Line
Washi tapes may seem like any plain old colored tapes that you can use to stick things with. While that may be true to some extent, they also have special properties that make them more enjoyable to use than the average type of tape. They are carefully and meticulously made to be beautiful and sustainable. Whether you decide to use cute washi tape, washi tape stickers, or even Christmas washi tape, these adhesives add a touch of art to your life indeed.
Written by EndlessPens Blogger Ramona Kabigting