Back-to-School Series, DIY
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Dorm Room DIY \\ Using Washi Tape

Washi tape [wa meaning “Japanese” and shi meaning “paper”] has been all the rage lately as it can be used for scrapbooking, decorating, and pretty much any craft idea you can think of! Haven’t heard of it? According to

Washi tape is typically made from natural fibers, such as bamboo or hemp, but most commonly from the bark of trees that are native to Japan — the mulberry, the mitsumata shrub or the gampi tree. Most washi tapes are strong (as strong as duct tape in some cases!) and functional as well as pretty, making them wonderful for both everyday and decorative use.

9781440579417cvr.inddI recently purchased a bag of this amazing stuff on Etsy (the seller I went through lets you select 8 of your own colors and patterns for a low price!) so I would be ready to DIY my apartment once I move in (August 21!!!). I’ve used the book Totally Washi! by Ashley Ann Laz, to get my creative juices flowing and have already tried a few of her ideas. Below are a couple of my favorite projects from the book… perfect for back to school!

1. Quote Art

Typography has become an art form in its own right over the last few years. I always keep a few quotes around my room as a source of inspiration. This project is great to keep you motivated or remind you of the important things in life. You can choose the quotes you want, or pick some lyrics from your favorite song!


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Materials:  Card stock\\ Washi tape\\ Alphabet stencil (optional)\\ Scissors\\ X-ACTO knife\\ Card stock (your choice of size)\\ Frame (to fit the card stock)

  1. Cut out a large piece of card stock. The size you need will vary depending on the length of the quote or saying you want to put on your wall.
  2. Place strips of washi tape over the piece of card stock you just cut out. You want the washi tape to completely cover the entire piece.
  3. Use a stencil to outline the letters for the quote or saying you want on your wall. You can also freehand the letters if you don’t have any stencils available.
  4. Once you have cut the letters, very carefully peel the washi tape letters off of the card stock. Go slowly; you don’t want to rip the letters.
  5. Place the letters on the cardstock to spell out your favorite quote or saying.
  6. Finally, place your picture in a frame and hang it on your wall!

Try This!

Use different washi tape designs to make the letters pop.

2. Wall Calendar

Got a lot of tests, sports practices, extracurricular events, or weekend plans? You need a calendar to keep track of everything! The best part of this calendar is that you can grab the Post-it note “day” on your way out the door—you’ll be sure to remember everything you need to do that day!


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Materials: Washi tape\\ Scissors\\ Post-it notes

  1.  Place a strip of washi tape horizontally as straight as you can on the wall, leaving space below it for the calendar. This piece of tape is going to be the top border of the calendar.
  2. Instead of using a ruler, use the Post-it notes as your measurement guide to create your calendar grid. It will make the process a lot quicker and less confusing. Place seven Post-it notes horizontally under the washi tape to represent the days of the week. Make sure to leave some space between each Post-it note. Place five Post-it notes vertically under the first Post-it note to mark the beginning of each week in the month. Again, leave a bit of space between the Post-it notes.
  3. Place vertical strips of washi tape between the Post-it notes to separate the days of the week. If doesn’t matter if it is a little uneven at first. Since washi tape is removable, you can adjust the calendar as you add more Post-it notes.
  4. Continue to add rows of Post-it notes under the existing row until you have a total of five rows. Place a horizontal strip of washi tape along the space between each row to finish creating the washi tape calendar grid.
  5. On the Post-it notes, write the dates for the month you’ve created, then add your events or to-do lists. Your calendar is ready to use!

There are over 45 craft ideas featured in Totally Washi! As I write out this post, I am typing on keys I’ve decorated with the tape. A few other ideas I love is the temporary wallpaper (p.86), washi tape pencils (p.140), and DIY phone case. I definitely recommend picking up your own copy of the book if you’re interested in learning more unique ways to jazz up any space!

Excerpted from Totally Washi! by Ashley Ann Laz Copyright © 2014 F+W Media, Inc. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved. Photos courtesy of Ashley Ann Laz and Adams Media.Screen Shot 2014-07-20 at 9.40.21 PM

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