Back to School – Washi Tape Pencils

I LOVE washi tape. I actually on just discovered it within the past year or so, but immediately fell in love with it.  I have accumulated quite a collection off of eBay, and Amazon, but have found the greatest assortment on Etsy.  Washi tape originated in Japan and is basically decorative masking tape.  If you are searching for it on line you can search for it using the following:  washi tape, decorative tape, masking tape, and fabric tape.

What’s so fun about washi tape? Well, you can find it all sorts of fun colors and patterns and you can decorate just about anything you want within. I’ve decorated notebooks, containers, and cardboard boxes.

Today I decided to decorate some pencils for the kids to add to their back to school supplies. All you need is washi tape (or any decorative tape), sharpened pencils, and a decent hand-held pencil sharpener.  It also helps to have a hard rubber brayer (roller) and an X-acto knife, but it’s not critical.

To make the pencils, start with  sharpened pencils and  just wrap them with tape being sure not to leave any bubbles or wrinkles. Roll and/or smooth out the tape using your roller or fingers.  You can wrap your pencils running the tape lengthwise running the tape from the base of the metal to the pencil tip- most washi tape is narrow enough that you will need to run to lengths of tape down the pencil to cover it all the way around.  You can also wrap the tape around the pencil in circles holding the tape at an angle so that one round slightly overlaps the previous round of tape. Keep wrapping until all of the pencil is covered. Either way you do it, you should firmly press the tape around the tip and then give it a quick sharpening in your pencil sharpener to trim the tape down for a clean-looking tip. If your pencil sharpener doesn’t have a good blade on it, you won’t get the clean-looking tip you want. If your tape isn’t exactly lined up with the metal at the top  you can trim it with an X-acto knife.

That’s all there is to it. And if you aren’t happy with how a pencil comes out, simply pull the tape up and lay it down again.  This is an easy back to school surprise that any kid will love.  They’ll also enjoy making their own!

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