Industry and business

How to make handwriting ink at home

How to make handwriting ink at home

Ink is a liquid or paste that contains colored pigments and is used for writing or drawing on surfaces to create designs. The first recorded use of ink in history dates back to around 2500 BCE, and possibly even earlier. Each civilization had its own unique way of manufacturing ink and using it for writing. People in ancient times used to make ink from a variety of materials such as plants, animals, or metals that they could easily find near their homes or trade within their communities.

Today, the printing ink industry generates profits of around 4 million dollars in the United States alone, according to the website Statista. Here, we have gathered several methods for making handmade ink for writing and creating artistic manuscripts, which everyone can easily try at home. Among them, you will also find a method for making colored ink.

Simple Handmade Ink Making Method

This is an easy and straightforward method to make handmade ink for writing, and the ink can be ready in about half an hour. Here are the materials you will need:

  • Charcoal powder
  • Gum Arabic (1 tablespoon)
  • Natural honey (1 tablespoon)
  • Natural vinegar (e.g., apple cider vinegar)
  • Mixing container

Start by putting equal amounts of gum Arabic and honey into the mixing container. Then gradually add charcoal powder to the mixture and mix them together using your finger or a wooden stick. After about 20 minutes of stirring, or when you find that the ingredients have a consistency similar to ink, add a small amount of natural vinegar and continue mixing for a little while.

Now the ink is ready; you can dilute it with water according to your preference and start writing.

Making Ink with Available Chemicals

This method might require a slightly older person’s assistance, so if you are a child, ask one of your parents to help you complete this method. Here are the materials you will need:

  • Black stones from paint or herb stores
  • Water
  • Gum Arabic or transparent white glue
  • Metal container

Preparation of Ink:

Bring a metal container with a handle, like a coffee pot, and put water and the black stones in it. Use half a small cup of water for each spoonful of black stones. Place the container on low heat, being careful not to let the mixture boil and spill outside the container. After slightly boiling the mixture, add some dissolved gum Arabic or transparent white glue to give the ink more shine and stability on paper.

Preparing Ink from Natural Plants

تحضير الحبر من نباتات طبيعية

There are many plants with excellent ink properties that you can take advantage of in your home to make natural and safe ink for writing. Some of these natural plants include black tea leaves, various types of berries, turmeric, safflower, and coffee. You can use any of these natural materials, mix them proportionately with water, and strengthen them with honey or gum Arabic. Then, filter the mixture to obtain the best homemade natural ink for writing.

Quick Method for Making Colored Ink

You can also follow this method to make colored ink. Here are the materials you will need:

  • Crushed walnut husks in the desired color (3 tablespoons)
  • Aspirin tablet (half a tablet)
  • Washing powder (a small sprinkle)
  • Small glass bottle or vial


Place the crushed walnut husks in the bottle in the desired quantity, as the more husks you add, the darker the color will be. Add half an aspirin tablet to the walnut husks, which will give the ink some shine when ready. Then add a sprinkle of washing powder (less than a quarter of a teaspoon) to make the ink smoother for writing. Now, pour 3/4 of a small glass of warm water into the bottle over the mixture. Make sure not to fill the bottle entirely to have room for shaking. Start shaking the bottle and continue for ten minutes, opening the bottle cap every minute to release the air resulting from shaking. Finally, pour the mixture into an ink container and begin writing.

Another Method for Preparing Ink at Home

طريقة اخرى لتحضير حبر الكتابة في المنزل

This method is a bit more challenging as it requires hours of work, but if you can get help from your friends or family, it will make the preparation easier. Here are the tools and materials needed:

  • Charcoal powder
  • Dissolved gum Arabic, about one-third of the amount of charcoal
  • Water as needed
  • Mortar and pestle for crushing and mixing the charcoal with gum Arabic


Put the dissolved gum Arabic into the crushing container and gradually add charcoal powder to it while continuously mixing and crushing. Continue this process for about ten hours, but it’s okay to take breaks. For example, work two hours per day for five days. During this period, when you find that it has dried, add some water drops to moisten it again. To check if the ink is ready, place a drop of ink on a piece of paper, then drop a drop of water on it. If you find flying particles of charcoal, it means the ink still needs more crushing.

How to Dissolve Gum Arabic:

Gum Arabic is an essential ingredient for making good ink. You can obtain it from herbal stores. To dissolve it, place it in a container of water until it reaches a consistency similar to that of honey.

It may take more than 24 hours for gum Arabic to dissolve completely, and to speed up the process, crush or grind it before placing it in the water. Finally, filter it to make it completely pure.

Adding a Nice Scent to the Ink

Before you finish making handmade ink for writing, you may want to make it more distinctive by giving it a pleasant scent. You can do this by buying rose water and adding it to the ink during the manufacturing process. However, be cautious not to add too much, as it may affect the consistency of the ink.

In conclusion, making ink at home is a beneficial alternative to buying ink from the markets, especially for students of Arabic calligraphy who are unable to buy ready-made materials. As you can see, most of these methods are easy and straightforward, so try them out and let us know which handmade ink-making method you find best?

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