The Bliss of Paper making

Hello friends – Happy Summertime! Not only are the days sunnier and the birds chirping but it is the bursting to life of the leaves on the trees and the flowers popping up everywhere that really puts my creativity into overdrive. You see, when you are a papermaker, you see the potential to put things in paper everywhere. I think it is because I am so drawn to nature that I want to preserve it forever, I want to capture it's beauty and make something out of it.  A primal instinct maybe from when we did once used to make everything we needed from the natural world around us. If I get a hint of inspiration, I am off home with it to turn it into paper.

Over the years I have experimented with just about everything from the flower and leave kingdom with a good many of my most excitable inspired moments resulting in disappointment once the drying stage has been completed. Why? Because flowers and leaves die, bleed and stain. Now I’m not trying to write the plot of a horror story here, but this is sadly true for paper. Now if you have plenty of time to wait and don’t mind waiting the excruciating amount of time it takes to press flowers until they dry or boil down leaves with caustic soda for hours, so that everything is in a state that will now preserve well in paper then your options are wide open. Me on the other hand is a person who sees inspiration and must make it happen today, not in a week or 3 days later. I need to do it now. Once I have made the batches of wet paper, I am also impatient, I am peeking at it whilst it is drying, or trying to iron it while it's wet so I can see it now! I just find it so hard to wait until tomorrow because I love it so much and I am so fascinated by it.

Anyone who knows me, knows how obsessed I am with papermaking and I will openly admit that out of all the paper crafts I know how to do, this is by far my favourite one. Why? Because it is sooooooo satisfying. Ok so it’s like this … you get your bills in the mail, you get your old print outs of assignments or work documents and you put them in a shredder (or if they are your bills – I like to tear up myself for fun). Then you put all of this pre-used paper into a blender and turn it back into pulp (and the pulp is like touching little fluffy clouds)! Then into the pulp you can use a variety of things to change it’s colour – paint, coloured paper, coffee, cocoa, tea, dye, organic material and then you can add anything else to it that takes your fancy – petals, glitter, confetti, thread, leaves, vegetables from your fridge etc. Then once you have made it and it dries, it looks absolutely stunning and not like the stinky bill etc it used to be.

With these batches of beautiful paper (I can make up to 60 sheets in one session) you can turn it into your own bespoke stationery. You can make it into a journal, a photo album, cards, stationery set or anything else you can think of. What makes it so exciting is that you just recycled waste paper into something beautiful that looks completely different from it's original form but still carries bits of it in it alongside the newly added petals and colour. You can now use the paper again, but in a new and more artistic way. It is so cool that I have no more words to describe my passion for it, if you want to experience what I’m taking about then come join me in one or all 3 of our papermaking workshops, we have a class on “colours”, “florals” and “garden” and you can see the results of these in the gallery below! My recipes are tried and tested and S-T-UN-N-I-N-G! Once you have made your paper, bring it along to the journal or photo album workshops and turn it into a really special stationery item that you can love forever.

Wishing you Creative Bliss

Love, Cherie xxx

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