Bleeding Tissue Paper Art

A short while ago I had never heard of bleeding tissue paper art before. I saw all this great artwork on Pinterest and assumed it was watercolor. Then a teacher friend told me about it and I was intrigued. I went home, collected all the tissue paper we had in the house, and started cutting it into pieces to make art with the kids. Boy, was that a failure!

We followed the instructions, which are super easy, and nothing happened. Why? Because gift wrapping tissue paper does NOT bleed dye. And for good reason as you don’t want your wrapped gift to get ruined with dye in case it gets wet. You have to use art tissue paper, which is available at teacher supply stores or Amazon. It is fairly inexpensive for the large amount you receive and will last you a long time. We used the Pacon Art Paper and it worked really well.

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Patriotic Tissue Paper Resist Art

We wanted to make something patriotic for July 4th and decided to try resist art and added stars. The result was great.


  • Watercolor paper or white card stock. Regular paper will work too but will get very wrinkly.
  • Bleeding Tissue Art Paper cut into small pieces or shapes
  • sponge foam brush
  • glass with water or spray bottle with water
  • white crayon


  1. With the white crayon draw stars or whatever you can think of on the paper.
  2. Then wet the paper with the spray bottle or foam brush.

3. Place tissue paper onto the wet paper. Make sure to cover the crayon stars.

Just a little warning: The dye that is being released is not easy to wash off. Put some newspaper under your artwork. These are my fingers after handling the wet paper and it took several good scrubs to get the color off.

4. Once your tissue paper is all applied, wet it again with water to make sure the dye will bleed.

5. Wait a couple minutes and then carefully remove the tissue from your paper.

6. Admire your stars!

Lay your artwork out to dry. If you have a cookie cooling rack that would be the perfect way to do it. My son left his paper on the table to dry and it ripped because it got stuck in the drying process.

You can just leave your art as is or make it into greeting cards, cut out stars and hang them in the window, or make a garland.

Also check out my paper stars craft for more 4th of July fun.

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