How To Age Paper

We recently started playing Curse of Strahd (a Dungeons & Dragons campaign), and felt like we needed to make the content come to life.  In the process of doing this, we may or may not have almost burned down a house.  But it was worth it! Hopefully with this tutorial you can have a great end product and a fully intact house.  Fingers crossed.


This would also be a great way to make customized game night invitations, or a way to spice up a school project (because all school projects should involve fire).

What you’ll need:

  • paper
  • coffee or tea
  • a baking sheet with a rim or casserole dish (big enough to fit your piece of paper)
  • A functional oven
  • A lighter or matches
  • A sink (We’re not joking. VERY IMPORTANT!)



Step-by-step guide for aging paper

  1. Brew your coffee or tea. You’ll only need enough to barely cover the bottom of the baking sheet.  And also some extra for you to enjoy. While you’re having that coffee, go ahead and preheat your oven to 200F.
  2. Print out your document (or hand write your document; be careful about your ink running!).  Make sure to pick a fun font to fit your theme!
  3. Put the document in the baking sheet and pour your coffee/tea on top.  Make sure you cover the whole thing.
  4. Carefully remove your paper from the liquid and set it somewhere to rest.  Don’t accidently tear off a bit like we did. #gamingfail
  5. Pour out the coffee/tea and quickly dry your baking sheet.  Don’t accidently spill it all over the kitchen like we did. #secondgamingfail
  6. Put your document back in the baking sheet and put that baby in the oven.  (No babies were harmed in the making of this post).  
  7. Let the document bake for 10 minutes
  8. Remove the document from the baking sheet, and tightly roll it up
  9. This is the part where you need to be near a sink (and preferably far away from a smoke detector).  Trust us on this one. Singe each end with your match, allow it to burn for a moment, and then put out the fire.

Pro tip: wait before doing the other side. It will not look like your paper is on fire, but it definitely is.

When we made our document and saw the fire spreading, panic set in and we dunked the ends of the rolled paper into running water.  A better idea is to wet your fingers and then pat the slightly lit edges with your wet fingers before the flames fully catch. Hindsight is 20/20…

And then, my friends, you are all done!  Unroll your paper and check out the end results.  

2 thoughts on “How To Age Paper

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