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Re: Marbled Paper

Lisa asked about paper for marbling.

Computer paper is usually good, but fragile practice paper. Some brands m=
work better than others, some not at all. You'll have to experiment.

For "real" paper for marbling I swear by Classic Laid or Classic Linen.
They are acid free, but apparently not buffered with calcium carbonate,
which tends to repel marbling colors. I don't know whether these papers a=
available in Canada, but they are very common printing papers in the US.
They are not available in art stores, but through paper distributors (fou=
in Yellow Pages under "Paper") that supplies printers with paper. General=
you have to order entire cartons of 1,000 sheets or so. These places will=

supply samples to test. 70 Lb. text weight is best, though 60, 75 and 80
lb. are OK too.

Most acid free papers will not marble well so if you have access to some,=

test them first. It seems to be next to impossible to get a distributor o=
manufacturer to tell you how the paper is made acid free, they seem to
consider it a secret. If it is done by buffering with the calcium carbona=
you can pretty well forget it. As more and more papers become acid free,
marblers have had to give up their old stand-by reliable papers. Not to s=
that we used rotten acidy paper before........most were very near neutral=

good quality printing papers. In any case a little acid content is added =
the paper with the marbling process, so it will still be left up to the
bookbinder or other user of the paper to deacidify if they wish. Still
after marbling the papers are pretty near neutral anyway. What's nice abo=
using the Classic papers is that, of course the back, unmarbled side is
still acid free after marbling.

Papers from art stores that work well are Canson and Strathmore (or maybe=

some other brands) Charcoal paper. Sketch pad paper is pretty awful.
Water-color paper is so-so depending on brand, but heavy for bookbinding.=

Make sure the ox-gall you get is the type used for marbling, not an "art"=

brand such as Windsor Newton. This will work, but you'll need tons of it.=

If the gall is pale, like apple juice, you have the cleaned up, polite
version of ox-gall. The "real" marbling gall is dark brown and it takes
some getting used to the awful smell of it, but you need very little to
make the colors spread. Also very important, especially for bookbinding
use, is to make sure the colors are not too "fugitive", meaning they woul=
fade quickly with exposure to light. It also helps if the company you ord=
supplies from has a marbler on hand who can give technical advice in usin=
their materials, because marbling is very troublesome at times, to say th=
least. =

Good Luck... ......I hope you have wonderful fun marbling. Feel free to a=
for advice anytime.

Iris Nevins

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