Thursday, January 21, 2010

How to Laminate With Contact Paper

Yippee- my first tutorial!  I'm starting with a technique I have used repeatedly in my classroom to make materials that can withstand daily preschool use.  If you have access to a laminating machine, that's great!  But not all of us have access to one, nor does it always provide a durable finished product.  As a teacher, the last thing I want to do is remake classroom materials because the students have pulled apart the lamination!  This technique can be applied to many projects, not just making Montessori materials.

How to Laminate With Contact Paper

In addition to the item you wish to laminate, you will need transparent Contact paper and scissors.  In this case I also needed double-sided tape to fix my book page to a larger piece of card stock.  Rubber cement also works.  Note:  I find the grid on the back of Contact paper easiest to cut.  Any brand of transparent shelf liner will suffice for this project!

Assemble the piece you wish to laminate. 

Using the grid on the back of the Contact paper, cut a shape 2 full squares larger than your item.  You can go 1 square if you are particularly good at centering your piece!

Next, the Contact paper so that it is 1full square smaller all around than your item.

Pull the paper backing off the smaller piece of Contact paper.  Eyeball where you think it should go so that it is centered. Take a deep breath and put it on using your fingers to smooth out the wrinkles. 

Turn your item over so it is laying face up.  Repeat the previous step. 

Carefully pick the item up by the corners of the contact paper and turn over so the sticky side is face up.  With your scissors cut the corners off the Contact paper. I have been known to trim flaps that are out of proportion with the others!

Once all four corners are removed it is time to lay the flaps down.  The larger front piece will (hopefully) overlap the edge of the back piece.  Smooth to your heart's content!

Voila!  You have used transparent Contact paper to protect your product!  In this case I am making a book about the Solar System  :D

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