Friday, March 16, 2012

Paper making frames cheaply made

Step one: Go to your local second hand store of whatever sort and buy old picture frames and canvases of the sizes desired.

Step two: Go to your local hardware and buy a fine mesh. For this I bought a small roll of fly screen mesh. Also buy a staple gun if you don't already have one.

Step three: Clean up the frames and prepare them for attaching the mesh. Put aside the glass, cardboard and backing for another use. The cardboard could be used for your paper making, depending on the sort of paper you want. Fold back any metal bits that are sticking out and remove any clips. You want just the wood frame.

Step four: Cut the mesh to size. make sure it has plenty over the smallest hole in the picture frame or canvas. You will be attaching it to the outer face of the frame.

Step five: If needed, cut back overhang. If using frames instead of canvases, you may need to cut back the wood with a Stanley knife in order to ensure there is a single edge down to the mesh in which the paper can form and be easily flicked out of. If there is an extra overhang you may be able to form your paper but getting it off the mesh will prove difficult. Make it as straight as possible but don't worry too much. Any paper you make will likely need trimming or sanding straight anyway.

Step six: Staple on the sized mesh.

How to use: You fill a bucket with a certain amount of paper, torn into shreds, and add water. Soak and treat as you wish until the paper has fallen apart into fibres. Stir the fibres up and then dip the frame into the bucket, pushing it down half way. Then pull the frame slowly up until and use the sifting motion just before you take the frame from the water in order to spread the fibres evenly across the frame. Take out, allow to drip until the paper appears settled and then flick onto the drying surface. That is the basic method but there are many variations for different types of paper and for different qualities.

Use this side up.

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