I keep a 48-inch roll of Kraft paper in my tool closet to use for all sorts projects and jobs around my space — for a big page to scrawl ideas on, a disposable drawable tablecloth, instant wrapping paper, table protection for messy projects…(see images below for even more fat ideas).

Canal House Paper Table “Cloth”; Christopher Hirsheimer

When I need paper, I have to unfurl the heavy roll and cut it with a utility knife, an unwieldy practice that leaves a raggedy edge. If I had the room in my city apartment, I’d keep a roll on a wall to have easy access when the mood/need hits.

For some time, I’ve had my eye on George & Willy’s Studio Roller a wall-mounted, Kraft paper roll dispenser that easily lets you pull out a section of paper when you need it. It’s wonderful looking and gets rave reviews on Etsy. The flat bar at the bottom holds the sheet flat on the wall for displaying whatever you want to write or draw, and acts as a cutter. It also comes in white. Perfect.

Kraft Wall-Mount 2

It’s not cheap but all reports indicate it’s very well made. Seeing it in action makes me think that rolls smaller than 48″ work as well, and make for less weight and expense.

It would be great in a kitchen, work room, or kid’s room for impromptu projects…

George & Willy / Etsy

It’s footprint can be customized:

Kraft Wall-Mount 4

There are less expensive possibilities. Rettel makes a well-reviewed version of the sleek George & Willy model up to 24 inches.

I like this straightforward Bulman that holds rolls up to 36 inches and can be used on a table or wall mounted. An Amazon reviewer gave precise directions for its use:

The bar that goes across the roll holds the paper in place and also gives you a tension mounted straight edge along which to tear your paper. This is how art paper, butcher paper, bulletin board paper, etc has been used in schools and businesses for years. There is no “serrated edge” that someone whined about. It’s not a blade. It’s a straight edge. If you want a perfect cut, use a pair of scissors. This holder keeps your paper in a convenient contraption, allows you to pull off as much paper as you need, tear it off in one piece, and keeps the roll from unrolling. It’s perfectly made. The little rubber feet on the bottom keep it from slipping or sliding on the table or countertop you’re working from.

The key to a perfect tear is tension. Hold both corners of the piece you are tearing. Put stiff tension on one corner and begin to move the paper against the tension bar, either up or down (depending on how your roll is on the rack. I prefer to have it coming over the top so I can tear by lifting up against the tension bar). Once it begins to cut, maintain motion and tension on the corner you are tearing and pull it all the way across the bar. You’ll get a perfect tear every time. Ideal sizes of paper that are easy for tearing are between 2-6 feet long. Once you master the tension though, you can do it at much further distances. This will create a tear in the paper similar to folding it in half and then tearing it along the edge of a table. It’s clean and precise.

 

Bulman has a number of models on Amazon that people seem to like. Some are modeled after this classic from Gaylor Archival

yellow Kraft paper + dispenser

Here are some of the things you can do with Kraft paper, simple amazing stuff:

It makes a great surface to work on…

Lynsey Fryers

…artist Dieter Roth put a fresh blotter on his work table periodically to collect as an artwork…

Abby Robinson/Hauser & Wirth Gallery

…lovely place settings..

Pamela Hovland

…gift wrap

Sally Schneider

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