Saturday, 23 June 2018

Boiling Another Book

Boiling a book, or boiling paper is just a fancy way of saying eco printing. I do not like to use the expression eco printing because even though I have read countless tutorials on it and watched videos about it, there always seem to be an awful lot of ingedients involved (like allum and mordants and such) and I tend to try and go the „easiest“ way possible with as few ingredients as I can get away with. I suppose, having stated I like to go the easy way, you will read on and throw your hands in the air and exclaim that my process is anything but easy and so complicated, but really the only difficult and time consuming bit was planning the layout how I wanted my book to be later and tearing the relatively thick watercolour paper I used.

I started out with a single large sheet of watercolour paper, it is larger than 18“ x 24“ (the size of the green cutting mat underneath). I absolutely love the natural deckled edge of the paper and I wanted to keep it for my book and even make it a key feature. So to have my pages all matching in with this I did not cut my paper, I folded it repeatedly on the same fold and tore it. I need 8 pages for my planned book, so the fist fold is lenghtways, in preparation of then tearing it into 8equal parts.

I will spare you the tedious process, here are my 8 pages with deckled edges.

For the next part the marking lines on the mat came in very handy. I needed to score and fold all my pages according to my diagram below.

This is what it looks like scored and the picture afterwards shows the page folded as planned, featuring the deckled edge.

I also planned out a cover for my pages to be sewn into and to be boiled along with the rest if the book. For that I went into my garden and picked plenty of different leaves and grasses. I then layered the pages as I wanted them, with plant material inside and outside and between and tied it into a nice loose little bundle ready for boiling. I do not have pictures of this process, but I have a picture of the bundle in the pot, simmering happily.

I used ordinary (black) teabags and roibush teabags for my boiling solution. No chemicals or dyes involved this time, I needed to use one of my cooking pots and chemicals would have ruined it for foodstuffs.
The ready package doesn‘t look very impressive draining in my sink...

But the effect when the leaves are removed and the pages opened up is awesome in my opinion. You will just never be able to predict what is going to happen during the dyeing process and will end up with totally unique pieces.

This post is starting to get a little lenghty so I will show the binding process in my next post...


LindyLu said...

Absolutely stunning, Jess.

syklops said...

This turned out just fabulous! I love the colors and soft negative the plants leave. Can't wait for the binding post!

A Mynah Production said...

Wow! That doesn't seem too difficult...I would like to try it too! Beautiful results!

Clodagh said...

Very cool! I've never seen this before!