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