Changing shoji paper

This page explains the procedure for changing the paper part of a Japanese paper screen. This requires a special kind of paper and glue which is water-soluble and thus reversible.

Remove the old paper

Removing the paper

The glue used to hold shoji on is soluble in water.

Removing the paper

The parts of the paper glued to the wood frame are wetted.

Ripping off the paper

The paper can easily be removed if it's wet enough.

Punching holes in the shoji for fun

Children enjoy making holes in the paper.

Got the worst off

Most of the paper has been removed.

Papering the shoji - equipment

This frame is bare and now glue is applied.

Applying shoji glue

The glue applicator has a point on the side which guides the glue hole to the centre of the frame wood.

Glue on the frame

Use the glue specifically for shoji, which is water soluble and doesn't damage the wood frame when removed.

Use the roller to get the glue on

This roller is handy for evenly applying the glue to the paper.

Last one

The paper is larger than the frame.

Cutting off excess

Cut the edges using a ruler and a sharp knife.

Spraying water

There is no need to worry about the wrinkles in the paper.

After spraying water

After spraying water on, the paper sags.

The finished shoji

After drying the wrinkles disappear.

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