Sunday, August 13, 2017
Thursday, August 3, 2017
Harvesting about 8 cattail heads ("punks") that have matured, then going through the cooking and papermaking process with them, yields one sheet of paper.
I don't really think the result is very pretty, and making paper this way is a lot of work; but to do it the same way it was done centuries ago feels pretty special!
Sunday, July 30, 2017
I started with a pot of dry Forsythia leaves, soaked them in water overnight, then added soda ash and cooked for 3 hours. After thorough rinsing, I had a soft glob for making paper pulp. It yielded one sheet. First photo is laying flat on my desk, then flipped over and held up to sunlight in second photo. The textured lines are the stems and veins of the leaves, but it really is mostly paper-thin!
Thursday, July 27, 2017
Four ears of corn yielded two strong sheets with sizing added to the pulp, so it will take ink and paint with no blotting or feathering effect. It's not exceptionally pretty, but it's so traditional that I love it. I could see pages in a handmade book or journal like this, but mine may become backgrounds for small works of art.
I'm sorry to be out of sync with posting here, but each day brings a different ability for my hands. In the meantime, here is a sheet of cotton paper I made from cut-up white cotton fabric using scissors (my hand never should have done that!). It wasn't good for my blender either, you can still see threads, some of which wrapped around the blender blades. It's interesting though, and treated with a gelatin sizing so it can be written upon. However, I'll probably use it as a mounting sheet for a piece of my artwork. I've learned making fabric paper needs an industrial Hollander Beater to chop the ingredients into good pulp. It's an expensive piece of equipment, large and very strong. So I think I will stick with plants that my blender can handle. Next I'll show the results of my corn paper effort.
Monday, July 24, 2017
This is an ancient art like the process that produced papyrus. I'm making "corn paper" from the leaves of husked corn. They are washed and cut into pieces before soaking overnight in water (above). The next day they are drained and cooked with a soda ash solution for 2+ hours to break down the plant fibers. Cooking causes color changes from light green to brown. After cooling overnight, I'll use my usual handmade paper-making process and post a photo of the result tomorrow. I try to avoid cooking, but my healing hand likes it better than sewing and knitting. I may have enough pulp to make 2 whole sheets of paper, wish me luck!
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Friday, July 14, 2017
I made this mini for my swap group July partner. Luckily, I had some orpahn blocks, so putting it together wasn't a big project for me. Just enough though, you should have seen me trying to sew on the buttons! Finger dexterity is still pretty absent. Patience is a virtue!
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Thursday, June 29, 2017
Sunday, June 25, 2017
It's been a long time since my hand surgery, and physical therapy goes on, but I needed to try doing something creative again. So I joined a Facebook group for making and swapping 4.5" paper-pieced blocks. There is a specific color theme for the outside triangles each month (yellow-orange for June), and the inside triangles/fussy-cut centers are sewer's choice. These blocks aren't hard, but I had to re-learn paper-piecing. After numerous "duh" mistakes, I was able to get these 3 done and will send them off. I will then receive 3 others in return. Fun!
Friday, April 28, 2017
On awakening this morning as the sun was rising I was greeted by these awesome but fleeting views --a shadow of lacy curtains on my quilt rack and rainbows on the wall from a round crystal hanging by the window. For those few moments, all seemed right with the world.