‘Tis the season for gift giving. Wrapping can be a ritual and a way to extend the love beyond what comes inside the package. There are so many creative approaches to wrapping, and in Japan they have perfected the art of wrapping – it is a ritual tradition and perfect art form. In the Art…

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Part 2 – Wonderful Washi While washi  (Japanese paper) is a long-lasting Japanese traditional craft, how it became an important part of Japanese culture is almost forgotten even by most Japanese.  In thinking about washi’s role in etiquette, social rituals, and some possibly overlooked utilitarian uses,  in this post, I want to show you some of…

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Hanji or Korean paper is one of our most popular handmade papers. Hanji is used in a traditional craft called joomchi, a kind of felting of different paper sheets together to create a wonderful effect; organic shapes in rich colors spring to life from an otherwise flat sheet of paper. Hailing from Colorado, PJ Bergin has…

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Papel Amate (or amatyl) although it comes in sheets, is technically not formed the same way paper is.  It is referred to as “bark cloth”, “paper cloth” and as “paper”, depending on who you talk to.   The most significant fact is that the oldest codex known was made from amate in the pre-columbian era.  The fibers are…

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As my feet touch the ground in Japan, and I try to adjust my internal clock to Tokyo time, I still am coming off a papermaking and printmaking high that started in Portland.  No, it’s not because of any legal herbs or ink fumes, but the genuine love of both arts (and the city of…

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sculpture, 3-D design, mixed media paper structure, puppets

This month we turn to a local artist who not only uses handmade paper as a material in her mixed media sculptures, but also uses it to teach young ones to respect the environment and become active participants in caring for it. Meet Lisa Abbatomarco and her unique approach to handmade paper. She has been an…

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Many of our readers are quite knowledgeable when it comes to sizing your own paper, especially sizing your “go-to” paper. Here is a step-by-step “recipe” for cooking up your own sizing and applying it to your favorite Eastern paper. The photos shown here are mostly depicting sizing made from wheat starch.  Nope!, it’s not a…

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Without a doubt Koreans are passionate about their kimchi and have successfully shown the rest of the world what they’re boasting about. After attending a hanji-Korean paper- symposium entitled ” A Thousand Years Old Hanji, Meets the World” , I have no doubt hanji too will soon be rolling off everyone’s tongue!  Hanji is one…

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We met Helen Hiebert back in the early ’90s, in SoHo, NYC at Dieu Donné Papermill , and have since watched her blossom into truly a paperwoman extraordinaire. In our conversation below, we discuss handmade paper with Helen, who has cultivated a solid reputation as an educator, artist, writer and champion of the art of paper.  Enjoy her musings on handmade paper,…

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