It’s been busy, busy, busy again, but I wanted to get a post up asap about my paper-making activities!
Firstly, all the papercloth has been dried and removed, and I’m so pleased with how they turned out! Definitely have more confidence with the technique now, ready to try doing my own thing with it. Here are the finished pieces (I’ve laid them out on my A2 sketchbook as I don’t have any paper large enough to use as a background at the moment!):
I had so much fun making them, can’t wait to get started on the next pieces – but they’ll have to wait now as we’re getting ready to move house and I don’t want to risk ruining a piece if we have to pack up quickly!
In the mean time, I’ve also managed to get the pieces I needed to make paper! I didn’t want to fuss about trying to get hold of screens and frames, and I found this tutorial for making paper using a splatter guard! They’re cheap and easy to find – for those of you in the UK, you can buy them at Wilko’s for £1.50, and they’re huge. The paper does come out round but you can cut it to whatever shape you like.
I made my first piece out of newspaper, just to see how it would go, and this is what I got:
Considering it’s made out of newspaper, it actually looks pretty! I didn’t add anything to it as it was just a tester piece, but I’m really pleased with the result so I’ll probably end up using it for the project I had in mind.
As for the method I used, I took a bunch of other people’s methods and put bits together to suit my needs. So from the above tutorial, I took the splatter guard, but I hated the fussy (and slightly wasteful) method of getting the paper onto the guard. Instead, I made a smaller amount – by eye measuring approximately how much mulch would fit onto the guard (and got it pretty much bang on!) – then after mushing it, I used a spoon to ladle it onto the guard and spread it out with the spoon and my fingers. I didn’t worry too much about getting it perfectly even, just evenish, as you have to press and sponge it later anyway.
I also didn’t use a blender, because I don’t own one at the moment and didn’t want another thing to move to the new place. So I just used a fork – yeah, it took a while and some extra water, but it achieved the same effect. It did look a little gross for a while though:
Finally, thanks to the weather in England being a little less than dry… it took over twenty-four hours to dry, with occasional blow-drying and also popping it in the toaster oven after meals were cooked! But it was so worth it!
I currently have another batch in the making, using scraps of wallpaper samples leftover from the project below. It’s going to take a while longer to turn to mush, and some very hot water, but it should produce some lovely paper (even added a bit of red napkin to add a tinge of colour!)
My latest ongoing huge project is made up of a really long strip of paper and pieces cut out from wallpaper samples. At the moment, it just looks like wallpaper, but I’m pleased with it so far because the different samples have come together nicely. It’s gone away now until after the move as there’s not enough room for it while we’re so busy…