Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Simple Marbling Paper Technique

Marbled paper is made by floating oil paint on water. Because oil and water do not mix the paint stays on the surface of the water and can be manipulated to make designs. Marbled paper is sometimes used in bookmaking and as stationery. I've made marbled paper with children as young as three with some lovely results!
The supplies that you will need: 1. Odorless Turpentine (There are still some fumes, so you should work in a well ventilated area). 2. Tubes oil paint 3. A shallow pan that you devote to art projects or a polystyrene plate. 4. Small plastic squeeze bottle with a small opening or bottle with an eye dropper. 5. Old plastic comb or fork. 6. White drawing paper.
Squeeze oil paint into bottle and add enough odorless turpentine so that after it is thoroughly shaken it will flow easily from the container. This may require a little experimentation. Your shallow pan should contain water. Gently shake some of the turpentine/oil paint solution onto the surface of the water. Manipulate the colors on the surface with a comb or fork.
Gently drop a sheet of paper on top of the water.
Pick up your paper and you have your design!


I'm starting a newsletter with DIY templates, news from my Etsy shop, and step-by-step photos of some of the techniques for my artwork and illustrations. The newsletter in early June 2018 will include a template for a simple pop-up book to make with children. Sign-ups on the right-hand side of the blog.


  1. Thanks so much for adding the beautiful result of the marbling technique to the post!! Just posted on Craft Gossip! Keep creating:)


  2. I've always wanted to find a proper tutorial how to do that, but most of them were not so good, but your seems to be effective. I must definately try it, because some while ago i fell in love with ebru art. Thank you so much for sharing!

  3. This is a great tutorial. I didn't know about this technique. I like it a lot. Thanks.

  4. You are all welcome! Thank you for visiting.

  5. Fantástico tutorial, esto hay que probarlo!!!!

  6. Thank you, I remember doing this at kinder when I was little, now I can show my kids how to do it

  7. Great tutorial Vicki, Thanks for taking the time to write it - I'm sure many will benefit from your shared knowledge!

    FYI, I used it as a reference on a recent paper marbling tutorial I did myself a week or two ago, figured it might be a a good resource for some of your readers... http://www.ibookbinding.com/blog/marbled-paper-bookbinding-tutorial-and-photo-gallery/

    Keep up the good work and again, many thanks!
    ~ Paul