Making Papier Mache

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Papier Mache Pulp

Papier mache is a very versatile, lightweight modelling material.  To make your models more long lasting we recommend that acrylic varnish is applied to the finished model.

1 litre of luke warm water

2 tsp (10ml) of fine grain cellulose adhesive powder * (see notes below)

finely shredded newspaper

approx 2 tbsp (30ml) powder paint to colour (optional)


A little at a time sprinkle the cellulose adhesive onto the water, whisking all the while.  Stir very thoroughly.  Leave to stand for 15-30 minutes  stirring occasionally.

If you want coloured papier mache at this point add the powder paint and stir well.  The exact amount of powder paint will depend upon the colour and brand used.

Put the shredded newspaper in a large bowl.  (To produce a fine papier mache we recommend using a cross-cut paper shredder).  Add the adhesive a little at a time and "mash" well to mix.

Leave to stand for at least an hour, and preferably over night, to allow the paper to soften totally.


* Cellulose Adhesive Powder

The method above uses a fine grain cellulose adhesive (or paste) powder with a recommend dilution of 1% - i.e. 10ml of powder to 1 litre of water.

If Scola Cell "extra strong" cellulose adhesive flakes are used, as this is less dense, you will need to use about 45ml per litre  

For other types of cellulose adhesive please follow the manufacturer's instruction.

If you don't have cellulose adhesive, wallpaper paste can be used, however for children's crafts those containing fungicide should be avoided


I hope that you found this guide helpful.  If you have any comments we would really like to hear them :-)

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