Faux Leather with Masking Tape

by Beate Johns

Use some masking tape and your choice of inks to give your paper a leathery look.


  • Masking Tape
  • Water based ink
  • Clear Embossing Powder
  • Heat Gun
  • Blending Tool
  • Cardstock
  • Scissors


  1. Step 1

    Start covering your piece of cardstock with pieces of masking tape.

  2. Continue to add pieces of masking tape to your cardstock until your entire pieces is covered. Make sure you have no more cardstock showing anywhere.

    Using smaller pieces gives you a nicer finished project.

  3. Step 2

    Cut the overhanging tape off.

    You can also fold the tape over, but that will make the cardstock edges a bit lumpy.

  4. Step 3

    Sponge color to your masking tape covered cardstock. Continue to add color (pounce it if necessary or use a second color) until you like the way it looks.

  5. Step 4

    Cover the entire piece of masking tape cardstock with clear embossing powder.
    (The powder should adhere to the texture of the tape so no embossing ink is needed)

  6. Tap off access powder.

  7. Step 5

    Heat the embossing powder until it is melted.

  8. Your Faux Leather background is done.

  9. Step 6

    Finish your card.



    Other inks
    Try using pigment ink or even acrylic paint over your masking tape for a different look.

    Faux Leather with heat and dry embossing
    Try our Faux Leather Wallet tutorial. It shows you a different way to create a Faux Leather look.

Your Turn

You've seen the tutorial, now you try it! We've got a section of the gallery set aside for Faux Leather with Masking Tape. Try this technique, then upload your artwork to the gallery. Show us your creations!

***Please note - Internet Explorer/Edge is not a supported browser, and will not allow you to see the videos. Please use Chrome, Firefox or Safari to view our tutorial videos.

Questions and Comments

We'd love to get your feedback or questions. Leave your comment below.

Thank you for the reminder of this awesome technique...I'd forgotten about it. I can't wait to try again.
Kim  |  Fri Jul 4, 2008 at 4:57 PM
Wow, haven't seen this tutorial before! It's fantastic! Off to try it!
Minna  |  Wed Mar 25, 2009 at 11:58 AM
Wow, pretty sweet. I need to try it!
Shoe Italian  |  Wed Jul 8, 2009 at 11:23 AM
This is so cool!!! I have to try this!!!
Samantha Swindle  |  Sat Aug 15, 2009 at 5:15 AM
Nice site.Thanks ......................
Haven  |  Sat Mar 26, 2011 at 11:46 PM
Beate, I am new to SU. Tried your technique on several "manly man card" and have gotten 6 orders for them. Love it. After just a year of learning new techniques, it's finally paying off! Now I can buy more SU goodies. Thank you so very much.

Cheryl O'Dell
Beate Johns  |  Sat Jul 23, 2011 at 10:07 AM
What a great idea! Wish I'd found this sooner. I'm always looking for ways to make leather-like surfaces for my projects!
Carla Ink Eaton  |  Wed Sep 12, 2012 at 4:02 PM
Finally I was able to made the italian tutorial smile
Emanuela Scarpelli  |  Wed Aug 14, 2013 at 10:20 AM
I just ran across your faux leather technique. I am going to try that today, just a wee bit later. My questions really has nothing to do with the technique; it's about the layer beneath the stamp. The tan layer directly beneath the stamp looks as if you sponged color it; or is it a completely separate layer? How do you get that perfectly round white background behind the sponging?
Korkie  |  Wed Nov 4, 2015 at 7:23 AM
Hi Korkie! That piece was sponged while it was still in the die, so the edge of the die acts as a mask.
dina  |  Wed Nov 4, 2015 at 7:25 AM
Do love this technique...just discovered it looking at the Gallery this week...a marvelous effect!
Carlene Prichard  |  Sat Jul 15, 2017 at 10:51 PM

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