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DIY Texture Paste & Puffy Snow



I love love LOVE cards with dimensional elements and texture! When I first saw embossing paste I knew I had to try it, but it's kind of spendy and I was sure I'd use a lot. So, I wandered around cyberspace and found a recipe to try. But, I didn't have the exact ingredients and ended up experimenting with what I had on hand. The results were fabulous and came with a happy surprise... it puffs up when heated. ;) We'll cover that in part II of this tutorial.


 There are basically two ways to make the embossing paste: option 1 is to use baking soda and option 2 is to use corn starch. Baking soda has a finer texture and stays soft longer, allowing for you to add impressions from stamps or gently use a texture plate to press designs into the surface. Corn starch is slightly coarser and sets up hard rather than pliable. 


  • 1/2 cup baking soda
  • 1 Tbs Mod Podge
  • 1 Tbs white acrylic paint



This is ridiculously fun to play with and something I discovered completely by accident! I was trying to make my own texture paste and the recipe called for PVC glue. I have no idea what that is (I'm sure a trip to the craft store would solve the mystery) but I always have Mod Podge on hand, so I figured that would be a comparable substitute. It also called for corn starch which I used for my first batch.

For some reason I decided to use baking soda for the second batch. Perhaps I was running low on corn starch, or maybe it was the Costco-sized container of baking soda begging to be used for something... ANYTHING. I was incredibly happy with both batches and began a crafting bonanza using anything even remotely resembling a stencil. Being a naturally impatient person, it didn't take long for me to reach for my heat gun to speed up the drying process. This is when the ~magic~ happened! 


I'd forgotten Mod Podge tends to expand when heated - a fact I'd learned during other grand experiments I'll save for another day. The combination of Mod Podge and baking soda made a much softer paste that puffs and expands when heated. It also lends itself nicely to being "pressed" with different texture plates and even "de-bosses" when you stamp on it. When it's wet, glitter sticks to it and refuses to come off. You can even color it with alcohol markers, pearl powder or sponge it with dye ink. Add drops of re-inking dye or mix it with colors right on your craft sheet. The sky's the limit with all the ways this stuff can be used! Without further suspense here's the magical recipe:


  • 1/4 cup baking soda
  • 1 Tbs Mod Podge
  • 1 Tbs white acrylic paint

Add more baking soda if you'd prefer it thicker (up to 1/2 cup total) or a splash of water if you'd like it thinner. I use the thinner recipe for puffy snow and the thicker recipe for texture paste. 



  • When using the baking soda recipe, give the paste a bit of time to cool off and start to stiffen before attempting to make any impressions in the surface. It stays soft on the inside for a surprising amount of time and the thicker the paste, the longer it takes for the "inside" area to dry out. If you try it too soon it will stick to your stamp or texture plate and you'll have to "patch" it with more paste (not to mention washing your impression tool.) 
  • You might think adding glitter to the medium would create "glitter paste." Yeah, I thought so too. Unfortunately it takes a huge amount of glitter as the flakes just get coated in the white paint and lose their shimmer. Just add glitter to your project while the paste is still damp and you'll be much happier!
  • If you're layering embossing paste over ink, be sure to use non-water based ink. This is especially important with the puffy snow formula since it's wetter. I learned the hard way when I layered it on top of the first Holiday Lane house I'd made and let it sit for awhile before using the heat gun on it. The ink from the roof pattern I'd stamped bled into my pristine white snow and made it look like a volcano had spewed ash all over. While this occasionally does happen in Alaska, it's not the look I was going for. :(
  • Avoid the temptation to touch the "snow" while it's warm and puffy. I made this fatal error with that sad little house that now looks like it was attacked by a marshmallow monster. Just trust me on this... or look at the photo below. ;)


Much love & happy crafting!



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Denise Bryant

These projects turned out beautifully! I remember stumbling across a recipe before, and I thought I might try it.... one of these days! But your projects are really inspiring! Love the puffy look. Will have to pick up some Mod Podge though.... any jar of it I have is probably all dried up!

Shelly Sweigart

Hmmm for some reason I haven't been receiving your posts through my e-mail so I subscribed again. Love your texture paste but my favorite is the glittery puffy snow!



Kathy Mc

What a great discovery, Sunny! Love your inspiring projects and the puffy snow results.

Sandy Dayhoff

Thanks so much for sharing your recipes and projects, Sunny! Your projects are amazing!!

Sandy Dayhoff

Just wanted to ask - your recipe states 1/4 cup baking soda, but in the video, it says 1/2 cup - which do you use? Thank you!

Nancy G

These are awesome, just beautiful!!! So exciting I can't wait to try it!!


Sorry for the confusion Sandy! 1/2 cup baking soda for the texture paste because otherwise it will run under the edges of your stencil. When you make the puffy snow, you want it to be more runny so it will not look stiff and crusty, so only use 1/4 baking soda for the snow.

Hope that helps!!


Shelly, it's not you. My feed is supposed to output to Mail Chimp and automatically send out an email. It's not working so I have to manually create an email today and figure out how to fix it. Ugh! Time I could spend crafting instead... lol!

Diana Fleming

Wow! Incredible projects and great tutorials! I'm so happy to have found your blog and look forward to seeing lots more creative goodness from you!


Thank you for this tutorial - I love the tree but especially the little 3-D house - it's magical!

Marilyn in Michigan

I hope to get some time to play with the snow background. Thanks for sharing your recipes, Sunny!


You are so talented. You have my vote in the Paper Trey Ink challenge. Looking forward to following you on your blog.

Leanne S

I would have loved to make this if Mod Podge was available in my part of the world. A recipe for Mod Podge would be greatly appreciated.


How cool is this! It never even crossed my mind to try and make my own paste. I'm pretty sure I have all of these ingredients! Going to give it a whirl soon :)

Joanne Lowe

WOW, you're so artistic AND an inventor too!!! I love it that you include what you discover that didn't work too, I think that is SO helpful and it's what happens to all of us!!! I tend to do that too when I upload cards onto SCS, my name there is 905lovestostamp. Lately it's all been about organizing my stamps and dies when I have the energy to do something, but I CAN'T WAIT until I can create again!

I absolutely LOVED your puffy snow, especially that you created it yourself, and the texture paste too. Kudos to YOU!!!

I can tell that I am going to LOVE stopping in regularly to your blog, so if it's possible, I will subscribe...

FANTASTIC!!! LOVED this!!! :)

Best wishes,

Joanne Lowe

Jill A

Love seeing all your projects and ideas---thanks for sharing


Oh my goodness, these are so cute. Thanks for sharing your "findings" with us.

Donna M.

Love your videos & projects, & I cannot wait to try it! You're sooo creative!!!


Fun fun fun fun!!!! I must try this! Ohhh the snow possibilities...I know I"m going to be singing Snow from the White Christmas show when I try this. Thank you so much for sharing your fun find with us! And I love your excitement in the video!

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