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Lesson Plans

Re: Natural Fibers - Papermaking

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Tue, 9 Jun 1998 16:25:36 EDT

I read you could boil iris leaves to use in papermaking, and since I have some
in my yard I tried it. But when they are cooking, you talk about STINK! I
won't do that again inside. It also took a long time for the leaves to cook to
what I guessed was the right consistency.

We took vats of tinted blue, green and white pulp and placed gobs of it by
hand on the screens in a horizontal arrangement (not full stripes) for an
underwater look. (Some students used one color the traditional way). Then we
placed the iris leaves on top of the pulp in a vertical arrangement, with the
ends running off the bottom to act as seaweed, overlapping some, twisting
them, etc.

We couched them, smashed them flat with a rolling pin, let dry and then did
fish prints on them. More lovely odors. They loved printing with the fish so
well, some of them did it for three days and would have done more but I threw
out the fish. By the third they had to work outside, since the fish by then
were extremely smelly, even keeping them on ice between uses, and were losing
eyes, guts, etc., from the repeated printings. Of course the rowdier high
schoolers loved that! The products turned out very well, though.

As I have mentioned in the past, I get paper pulp donated from a local paper
mill, so any of you living close to one might try that. They give me 5 gallon
buckets of damp pulp. What I don't use it all right away, I put it in Baggies
and freeze.

I always give the paper company student work as an annual "thank you." They
loved the fish print I had matted for them. They had it framed and hung it in
the main office area.

Has anyone had success with the coffee grounds?
Mary Jane