Author(s): Helen Hiebert
Handmade paper has a unique texture and an individual quality that makes it not only a surface to write or print on, but also an object of beauty. With a small investment in equipment (or the supplies to make it from scratch), a small harvest of backyard weeds or garden plants, and the guidance of paper making expert Helen Hiebert, anyone can make exquisite papers right in the home kitchen. Hiebert's basic paper making techniques, laid out in illustrated step-by-step instructions, make it easy to blend and shape a variety of organic papers from such common plants as hosta, milkweed, and thistledown, as well as the more unusual pineapple, yucca, and seaweed. She describes how to collect, harvest, and process the plant fibres and then create sheets using both Western and Japanese techniques. Inspired by the community of paper making artists she is a part of, Hiebert features profiles of paper makers from around the world, highlighting their individual tips and techniques. She also includes project instructions for using handmade paper to create one-of-a-kind cards and envelopes, multi panelled lampshades, and accordion fold books.