This is why I love the internet. It’s moments like these. The elusive secret to making antique looking paper is grunge brushes. I used avariation from what I learned from the following youtube video. My end result wasn’t exactly the same because I used the techniques shown to make the paper look closer to what I needed it to look like. But the technique is the same. Grunge brushes, varying gradients of color right next to each other on the color swatch.
For years I’ve been using Unsharp Mask to sharpen images. That’s the way I was taught 10 years ago. The other day I hear from someone else recently graduated from a photo program, to try High Pass. and yeah, it works pretty good.
Here’s the link to the tutorial I used: http://www.photoshopessentials.com/photo-editing/sharpen-high-pass/