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PAPER CLAY EXPERIMENTS

Cover of "Paper Clay (Ceramics Handbooks)...Cover of Paper Clay (Ceramics Handbooks)

I recently had a request that I provide some large beads, but make them fairly light weight.  I knew there were several ways to accomplish this, making hollow beads being one way, but I had recently purchased the book on Paper clay by Rosette Gault, so I decided to give it a try. My information is from this book as well as my own observations along the way


For my first batch, I tore up two rolls of cheap toilet paper, ( the cheaper the better) and soaked overnight in about 5 gal. of water.
The next day I used a drill mixer to stir it up until it was fluffy.

If you have ever made home made paper, this part is just the same.
Be sure to use enough water, or it won't get fluffy.

DRILL MIXER



SOAKED PAPER




MIXED PAPER PULP


gently scoop out the paper pulp onto a sieve. Don't squeeze the water out. We want it to stay fluffy.

PULP DRAINING


Next you will need slip. It can be recycled from your current clay trimmings, or use 1/2 ball clay and 1/2 kaolin with enough water to make a thinnish yogurt texture. I also mixed the slip with my drill mixer.


SLIP

Place a ruler in the bucket of slip, so you can see how much pulp you are adding. For this batch I used 3 parts slip to 2 parts pulp.

 Add paper pulp to the slip until it's the proportion you want, and again mix with your drill mixer.



MIXED PAPER CLAY




MIXED PAPER CLAY ON PLASTER BAT

Pour your mixture out on plaster, and place in the sun if possible. Scrape every 15 min. or so until you can gather into a ball.

last recipie: 3 parts kaolin 3 parts ball clay, 6 parts water, 2 parts paper ( 1 to 3 ratio)
finished beads semed to adverage 25% lighter than 100% clay of equal size

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6 comments:

  1. this is soo interesting..thanks so much for sharing..i've been curious about paper clay..i want to do some larger wall hangings that are very light weight..this is a perfect solution.

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  2. They seemed to shrink about the same as normal clay.......but I didn't really measure the shrinkage, so if you try it let us know what you think

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  3. OK, silly question I know, and I think the answer is no, but do you fire them in the kiln?

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  4. Your blog is the best!! How fantastic. I love your work. Those beads are hot. Thanks so much for your visit to my blog. I so appreciate you taking time out of your creative day to come by. I will be back to visit and be inspired.
    Have a great week.
    V

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