Friday, April 27, 2012

Papermaking part 3 – floral inclusions

The Richard de Bas paper mill in France is well known for its floral papers. Less well known are the latest floral papers from Decorah, Iowa.
 Petals from violets and dandelions and young fern frond tips were added to the Zerkall & milkweed pulp. The violet petals were inclined to float to the surface, which made it difficult to incorporate them in the paper. However peristance prevailed and the effort yielded an interesting paper due in part to the contrast between the yellow and purple hues and the different shaped petals and the ferns.

This detail shows the tangled web of fibers and a fragment of dandelion petal. 

Some new fibers have been gathered: bast fiber from old milkweed stems which will be processed separately; and fiber from some hemp which self-seeds itself on the farm, no doubt a remnant of the wartime crops that were once grown for rope.

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