Washi tape is one of those things you don’t think you need . . . until it proves to be an essential and addictive addition to your stationery stash. Made of traditional Japanese paper, whose fibers originate from the bark of shrubs such as mulberry, or kozo, these everyday adhesives can be used in countless ways. You can use them to wrap gifts, seal letters, or decorate a bullet journal; you can even tear off strips to label jars or repair torn papers. They come in all sorts of delightful colors and patterns, and while choosing a set can be highly subjective, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites below.
1. Carousel Greetings Washi Tape Set
There are a lot of bulk washi tape sets out there, but the designs are often a little cheesy, uninspired, or too specific. We like this set because it offers 16 rolls in a great range of appealing and fun patterns. You get some simple geometries like stripes and polka dots but also visually interesting designs of plants and flowers, and while some are colorful, others come in black and white. The paper itself is true Japanese washi paper that is easy to tear by hand and has excellent adhesion. You can also remove strips easily, and they won’t leave any residue.
2. MT Washi Masking Tapes
When it comes to washi tape, MT is the leading name in the game. Created by the Japanese company Kamoi Kakoshi, which has been making industrial adhesives for more than a century, MT was launched in 2006 as a craft-specific brand. Its washi paper is thin but strong and has a pleasing smoothness, and its tape is reliably sticky but comes off clean. The colors are also very rich and attractive. This set features 10 bright, solid hues that are semitransparent. They are very lovely when used alone and can also produce striking effects when layered.
3. Dalibor Silvia Washi Tape Set
If you want a multitude of colors, we recommend this option, which provides 40 solid hues, from shades of the rainbow to earth tones, at a very affordable price. They are vibrant and eye-catching, and they won’t fade over time. With a width of 0.3 inch, these tapes are narrower than most, but this makes them particularly good for covering small areas with precision. Because you have so many colors at hand, you can also use them to create patterns or use as labels for color-coding.
4. Yubbaex Washi Tape
For sticky strips with some shimmer, consider this set of tapes, which stand out for their dynamic designs. Each roll features eye-catching abstractions that blend gestural washes with minimalist shapes, all in dreamy pastels. They are also finished with lustrous gold foil, an embellishment that doesn’t come off as gaudy or over-the-top but adds just the right amount of shine to the durable paper. Unlike standard washi tape, these rolls come with paper backings that you’ll have to peel off before use.
5. EnYan Washi Masking Tapes Set
For special-occasion uses, we recommend this washi tape set, which is decorated with patterns that have a vintage feel. Each roll features flowers or fruit that almost look like they were mechanically printed, with delicate details captured in soothing colors. Made of high-quality washi, these are artworks on their own. The designs change every few inches, providing greater variety, though some might find the inconsistency frustrating.