It's my dad's birthday on Thursday. Rather than buying some generic wrapping paper, I though I'd get a little creative and make something a bit more unique. I decided to make leaf print paper. My first attempt resulted in disastrous vaguely-leaf-shaped red splodges, but after Googling I learnt how to make more interesting designs!
To make leaf print paper, you will need:
Paper – newspaper would be the most frugal, but I opted for brown parcel paper for an autumnal feel!
Paint – I used cheap acrylic paint from Home Bargains (I made myself red cardboard wings for a costume at Uni last year!). Poster paint would probably crack when you folded the paper so be careful what you use!
Paintbrush/foam brush – A foam brush would work best to apply the paint thinly, but I didn't have one and a paintbrush worked pretty well!
Leaves – You need leaves with an interesting shape (oak leaves and sycamore/maple leaves look particularly cool) and with prominent veins on the back. Another tip is that particularly waxy leaves repel the paint so they don't work as well (for example, I had trouble with fuschia leaves).
Piece of scrap paper
The first step is to thinly apply the paint to the underside of the leaf (where the veins stick out). It's a good idea to paint the stem a little too as the shape looks better. Don't glob the paint on or you won't be able to make out the detail when it's printed.
Next, place the leaf paint-side down on the main sheet of paper. Put the scrap piece of paper over it and run your hand across it evenly to transfer the paint to your wrapping paper.
Carefully remove the leaf from the page, and you should have a nice leaf print on the wrapping paper.
Now repeat this until you've covered the paper!
Et voila, interesting wrapping paper! You can cut out one of the leaf prints to use as a tag too!
Might try this with holly to make Christmas wrapping paper too!