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How to Mix Patterned Paper

By: Marti Wills

There's more to scrapbooking and cardmaking than gluing random pieces of paper together! Learn techniques from Marti Wills, like how to mix patterned paper and your scrapbook page layouts will look so much more polished.

How to Mix Patterned Paper


  • Patterned paper (2-3 coordinating designs)
  • Solid cardstock to match (3-5 choices – some light & some dark)
  • Ink and foam blending tool or makeup sponge
  • Matching ink (dark colors)
  • Glue runner
  • Focal piece



  1. When you want to use patterned paper(s) in your card or other project always START with the patterned paper(s). It is easier to match your solid cardstock, focal piece/embellishment or colored stamp image to the pattern rather than the other way around.
  2. When using more than one pattern on a project it is easiest to choose from a paper pad or collection since these are made to match up to each other.
  3. When choosing the patterned papers keep these things in mind:
    • Color – you want to be sure your color scheme matches well
    • Theme/Style – in addition to color, pay attention to the theme of the papers – pairing up a vintage paper with a modern or whimsical paper or an adult-ish paper with a child-ish paper is not going to work well.
  4. Now choose some solid colored paper that matches the colors in your patterned ones. Choose some that are dark and some that are lighter. You need these to mat your patterned pieces on to give them a border and “contain” the different patterns so they don’t run together.
  5. The final tip is to ink the edges of the patterned pieces. This gives them additional separation from each other.

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