This quick-start guide to ageing and distressing will give you some simple techniques that you can start using today!
Choose a piece of patterned scrapbook paper or wallpaper and cut it to form a 1″ border on all sides of the photo. Using the blade of your scissors, rub along each edge. This will cause tiny tears in the paper.
The harder you rub, the more ragged the edges will be come.
When you are through, paint the edges with brown distress ink.
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Wipe the edges of your text block onto a light color distress ink, such as pink or orange. Dab your paintbrush into the water and tap it so that the bristles are barely wet. Use the paintbrush to pull the ink in towards the text.
Keep pulling in the ink until the entire text is lightly coated with the ink. Using a different color distress ink, such as brown or green, use a dry paintbrush and paint along the edges.
Pull the ink partially in with the paintbrush. When you are through, you'll have a two-tone aged text.
As you experiment with ageing your layouts, in addition to these techniques, you might also want to try using sandpaper, steel wool, coffee, a nail file, spray mist or even chalk.
One of the key things to keep in mind is not to overdo with the distressing.
If you're going to use a distressed background, then you might only want to age a couple other elements. If you're ageing your journal blocks, then perhaps you won't want to distress your photo mats.
Want more help creating that "old world" look on your pages? Check out our other article that shows you how to create a vintage scrapbook layout that looks authentic.