I can hardly believe tomorrow is the beginning of September! I have been learning so much the past few months and working hard to do so. Now that I am back home and with a working camera + laptop, I am excited to finally share some of the work I made this summer while attending Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts.
The first workshop I took was Extreme Papermaking with Julie McLaughlin. The focus was on creating large 5′ x 8′ sheets of paper by hand. Of course, making something this large was definitely a group effort, but luckily all my classmates are amazing people and we had a blast all week long. The pictures below are just a sneak peak of what goes into the process, not a full-on how-to.
First, we bundled about a pound of dried Kozo together and then soaked it in water to get it soft:
Next, we cooked the fibers for several hours to break them down:
We then beat the paper, first by hand and then with a Hollander beater, to create pulp:
After we had our pulp, we suspended it in a very large vat of water and used an oversized screen to pull very large, thin sheets of paper. It took at least six people to get just one sheet:
I had taken one papermaking class before this one, but they were both completely different. I am glad I got to do it a second time; I now feel that if I wanted to create a papermaking setup at home that I definitely have the knowledge to do so.
I haven’t decided what to do with my giant paper yet, but we also made some smaller sheets on our own when we weren’t busy pulling the EXTREME ones, and I am excited to use those in my bookmaking. My instructor, Julie, has a background in costume design, and uses her exquisite handmade paper to create incredible wearable garments:
Papermaking is [obviously] a great compliment to bookmaking, and I have some posts coming up on that (and all the other classes I took) too. I can’t wait to share it all, it’s so great to be blogging again!