Monday, November 15, 2010

Paper-making

Adam found another recipe for making paper.You will never guess what the interesting ingredient is!
Well ... it's dryer lint!
He and Julia are making paper for her to paint on.  They put the lint, with water and bleach, in a bucket, and then Julia strained it through a colander, on the patio.  Here, she's waiting for the water to drain out.
They put the remaining GUNK into the blender (Peter claims his smoothies will never be the same - boohoo!), to smooth it out, and I suppose break up the fibers a bit.
Then they spread it out on a screen. This is one of the screens from Adam's bee hives.  They let it finish draining, and drying. It's probably about a foot long.
Here's a little close-up.  Note how textured it is.  And it's very stiff -- like a firm piece of cardboard.  Julia wants to use this long piece like a bit of "tapestry" for painting a scene. But that's not all:  they're making more, and this time Adam's putting lye into it (made from our fireplace ash) to break up the fibers even more. He bought a bit role of mesh to use as the screen to drain it on. I don't know how huge this thing is going to be!
But next week, during Thanksgiving week, we're going to have special, fun school days.  One day will definitely be "Art Day," and Julia will be able to paint or draw, or model clay -- whatever she likes.  So this homemade paper will be great for those projects.  One day will be Cooking Day; that's very educational (and handy for Thanksgiving). Maybe the third day will be a good day for a long Nature Walk.

So.  Next time you empty your dryer lint, and you look at that huge wad of dried fabric, and you think, "I'm basically throwing away a sock each time I empty this thing!" -- remember, you can use all that wasted "cloth" to make paper! Fun paper, too!

3 comments:

  1. Oh, you're funny! Dryer lint -- It's one of those things I do without thinking, and I don't want to think about it.

    Cool project tho!

    Jody

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  2. Wonder what it looks like if you don't bleach it....could be interesting!!!

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  3. I know - I LOVE that we're using something I normally throw out, AND wrinkle my nose up when I do it :)

    Karen, I'd really like it better unbleached, I think. Imagine the colors coming through, from whatever you had washed that week -- blues and purples, and a little red. I'd like them to try that.

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