Sunday, August 16, 2009

Making Paper

My husband and I are down to very little garbage with almost everything that isn't kept for reuse is recyclable. But those recyclables pile up! So I've been wanting to try paper making for a long time. I've taken a couple books out of the library and have learned enough to at least give it a try....
So I picked up some inexpensive frames and cut some screening from the hardware store to fit them. I'd read about using tacks to hold the screen down but I thought that would lift the deckle away from the frame's surface and mess up the paper so I bought some nice green duck tape. I've heard you can do anything with duct tape and it seems to be working. One of my online friends, Judi/Approachable Art, said I could even use old pantyhose stretched over a small frame. Having lived in South Florida for several years I'm glad wearing pantyhose is now only a memory, so good use for some old pantyhose!

I simply tore up bits of newspaper and put them into the blender with some warm water. I decided to add some allspice for color and speckle it also gave a nice aroma. I'm noticing some of the allspice speckles may come lose from my papers but I'm not planning to write on this paper but rather include it in some way with my fiber studies and hopefully with my clay.Above photo shows a piece where I've added some cut bits of yarn to the paper.Then I thought I'd add some weeds and flower pieces I picked while out walking yesterday. I also sprinkled some turmeric on the pulp while it was still on the screen to add the yellow.A little piece of crochet cotton yarn was added and onion skin to another sample.I'd read about enclosing texture in your paper so I poured some pulp into my frame than laid a thicker piece of cord on it and poured another layer of pulp to create this raised piece.And then I threw some turmeric into the pulp to give a golden paper rather than the gray. This was so much easier than I expected so I'm sure I'll be experimenting lots more. One book suggests creating paper from seaweed so a beach excursion should be coming up soon!


  1. I've never made paper, but always thought it would be fun. Your results are wonderful. I look forward to seeing more.

  2. Pssst, you can use fabric bits too. Nice use of turmeric. I wonder if paprika could be used too?
    I loved the little bit that I made during a course I took and always wanted to get back to it. I still have the paper I made and I suppose I really should do something with them They are about 8" X 11". What size are yours?

  3. Thanks everyone! In case anyone else is wondering I made small samples. These are all either 4x6 or 2.5x3.5 inches. I went on to try cinnamon and also garlic. I won't use garlic again!

  4. The paper looks really good.

    Thanks for visiting my blog, hope you enjoyed the Little Gems.

  5. LOL @ the garlic... but you never know till you try, right? Have they dried yet? My biggest problem is making paper sheets that are too thick and when they draw, they cockle.

  6. Nice results!! Belinda and I had a go at papermaking this summer, too. I'll have to blog about it. (must've been around the time I had technological glitches with my camera, else I'm sure I would have blogged!)


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