This is an example of the texture used macOS Notes App.

enter image description here

How can I achieve a similar paper-ish look in Photoshop CC?

  • 1
    Are you asking how to make such an image from scratch? Because it is highly unlikely that the background you posted was made that way. Usually such images start as a photograph of a texture, altered perhaps by changing the contrast and brightness, then you can make it into a seamless pattern. There are tutorials for doing that on the internet. – Billy Kerr Jun 24 '17 at 14:03

This actually looks more like concrete if you ask me... Here is your image after messing with the levels a bit:

Levels Adjusted Texture

Almost looks like it has some text on it?

So anyway, just search for "concrete texture" (or whatever you wish to replicate - if you think it looks like paper search for paper)...

I found this image for example on Wikimedia Commons:

Concrete texture

After downloading it, I then placed it on top of your image (just to match your tile dimensions) and scaled it until I thought the texture looked fairly close to yours:

Example texture 1

Then you have to go through the process of making the texture tile seamless. There is good starter information on that here...

Once you have your texture seamless, add a Levels adjustment to it. I used settings like this:


To come up with this:

Example texture final

This was just 'quick and dirty' to give you an idea how something like this might be made... This example could really use some more work on the 'seamless' aspect but I'm short on time these days. This should be enough to get you started anyhow.


  • Thank you! I did not know such textures were made from starting pics, rather than from scratch!. So much yet to learn :) – u32004 Jun 24 '17 at 17:23
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    @B3y0nd3r We all start at the beginning... This is just one way to do this though. As with almost anything there is more than one way to do this as well, and this certainly could be made entirely from scratch in Photoshop. It's nice and easy to start with a free texture though, and it's satisfying to make it your own. If you want to play around with making your own from scratch you can always go into Filter > Filter Gallery and try out Texture > Texturizer... I got pretty close to your source image using 'Sandstone' like so: Texturizer: Sandstone – BANG Jun 25 '17 at 0:10

Handmade Paper from Subtle Patterns Site First you need an image to make a pattern out of, but not just any image, an image that you have the rights to use. If you have permission to use the image provided as an example use that. If you do not have permission to use that image, then take a photo of a similar texture with your phone then crop it and upload it to your computer. If you can’t do that, then you may be able to use the site Subtle Patterns (https://www.toptal.com/designers/subtlepatterns/faq/) to find a similar texture/image to use if you have a way of providing credit to the site.

Here is a link to the Handmade Paper Texture: https://www.toptal.com/designers/subtlepatterns/handmade-paper/

Once you have an image you can use, the process is pretty simple:

  1. Open the chosen image in Photoshop
  2. Click on Edit
  3. Define Pattern
  4. Enter a name for the pattern

Also in the case that you need to know how to apply this pattern in a way that yields the best results use the steps below:

  1. Click on create new fill or adjustment layer
  2. Pattern
  3. Adjust the scale up to 1000% or less depending on how much detail is desired

Hope this helps!

  • I'm afraid I explained it wrongly. My question is not how to make a pattern on photoshop, but how to design in photoshop a similar texture to the one I provided. – u32004 Jun 23 '17 at 23:39
  • 1
    My mistake, I meant to specify that there was a very similar texture named Handmade Paper on the website I referenced. Here is a link: toptal.com/designers/subtlepatterns/handmade-paper I will update my answer with an image of that texture and the link for other users reference as well. – user72517 Jun 26 '17 at 6:35

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