Scoring, Folding and Paper Grain – Practice Makes Perfect!

Learning how to find the grain direction in your paper and properly scoring your paper is key to creating beautiful and professional looking pieces.

    What is paper "grain"?

    Paper is made up of tiny grains of fiber that align in the same direction during the manufacturing process, much like a school of fish or a flock of migrating birds!

    • The many small fibers are pressed together.

    • The paper grain is the direction in which most of the paper fibers run.

    • The grain typically runs with the length of a rectangular sheet.

    • Test the paper to find the grain by bending the paper part way, as if to fold it.  Do this in each direction.

    • There is less resistance when the fold line runs with the grain.

    With the grain vs. against the grain



      • Makes a depression in the paper where you want the fold to be

      • Allows you to cleanly fold along the grain as well as against the grain

      • Makes a professional-looking and clean fold when using a heavier paper or cardstock

      • Prevents the paper from “cracking” along the fold line

      • Can be done with a scoring board, the back of a knife and a ruler, a dotting tool and a ruler, or with a tool called a “bone cutter"

      • Be sure to use a dull object to make the score.  The score should not puncture the surface of your paper, but simply make an impression

      • The heavier the paper, the deeper the depression will need to be. 



      score vs no score

        scoring tools

        Score your paper to score points on your paper projects!