- hello to everyone,
'Well, I can't beleive I did this, but perhaps we can learn from is. I made
up some alum solution a while ago- only I forgot one vital bit of info. I
had made the solution DOUBLE strength, intending to dilute the solution 50%
when I wanted to treat the paper ( I treat with painting "edger" only onthe
surface, not dipping the sheet into solution). Well, I forgot to label the
fact it was double strangth, and wound up aluming a bunch of appers with it
that way. I started marbling, and POW, I had serious alum pollution in my
bath. Boy I felt stupid!
So, my question to the wise and masterful is this: How do I:
a) reduce the alum concentratation on the sheet surface. I recall reading
in Ink & gall some years back that a fabric dyer mentioned that when dying
fabric, you can mordant the fabric, and then wash it again. The excess
mordant washes out, leaving only what is necessary. Of course, I have no
citation for this, and admit I am relying on rusty brain cells. Does anyone
out there recall this? tried it out?
b) reduce alum pollution in the bath. Well, I know there is n't too much I
can do about that one, other than start again. Prevention is always the
best remedy. Still, I wondered if anyone out there had dreamed up a
wonderful "alum-away" trick.
I would like to open up discussion concerning mordanting in general, what
people have found useful in which situation, which material they are
marbling, proportions, specific type (potassium aluminium sulfate, versus
aluminum sulfate), supply source, etc. etc. We could even touch on the
delicate issue of mordanting versus non- mordanting.
Kind regards to all,
Benson's Hand Bindery
Fine Custom Bookbinding & Conservation
Hand Marbled Papers
1319 B Summerville Ave.
Columbia S.C. 29201
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- Hi Jake........if I get alum ruined size, if it isn't too bad you may be
able to clean it off numerous times. Or toss it and start over.
I use aluminum sulphate and though standard measurement is one Tbs. to a
cup water, I use at least 2 cups of water with no decrease in efficacy. For
fabric I use 3 cups water.
If I marble paper with my acrylics (which I do not tend to use....not
traditional looking enough) I generally do not need alum at all on most
papers, and also do not need to rinse. Wish it were possible with the
As for the paper, can you run it through a plain water bath or rinse them?
- --- In Marbling@y..., irisnevins <irisnevins@c...> wrote:
> Hi Jake........if I get alum ruined size, if it isn't too bad you maybe
> able to clean it off numerous times. Or toss it and start over.is one Tbs. to a
> I use aluminum sulphate and though standard measurement
> cup water, I use at least 2 cups of water with no decrease inefficacy. For
> fabric I use 3 cups water.use....not
> If I marble paper with my acrylics (which I do not tend to
> traditional looking enough) I generally do not need alum at allon most
> papers, and also do not need to rinse. Wish it were possiblewith the
> watercolors.rinse them?
> As for the paper, can you run it through a plain water bath or
>I have tried rinsing papers before, but a while ago, with different
> Iris Nevins
stock. Turned out that paper was having problems due to
recycled contect and strange, inconsistent sizing. I'll try again
and let you know.
I have also found that spraying a little deionized (or distilled)
water over the surface, before skimming seems to "clarify" the
bath, though not completely. I did manage to catch the problem
in time so it's not so bad- and can be "hidden" by doing shell
spot patterns, so the white areas appear as veins.
I use aluminum sulfate, which is an industrial grade that I get in
25 lb buckets form McMaster -Carr. It is not as pure as some
grades, so I started making up solution and letting it settle for
some time, sediment collects at the bottom, clarifying the
solution before use. I have been using 2 tbsp per quart of water.
So it's the same as the 1 tbsp to 2 cups water. the thing is that if
my "double strength " solution is causing so much trouble, then
maybe it isn't just the alum. So I look to other sources...
I have noticed a big difference in something so basic- the
newspaper that I use for skimming. My local newspaper
changed format a little while age. They went from using a larger
sheet size, to a smaller sheet size to save money. Apparently
many newspapers all over the country are doing this. Well, whn
they changed, the new newspaper stock was TERRIBLE. It falls
apart instantly. I need to use 2 sheets at a time just to be able to
hold onto the paper (I should mention I'm working in a BIG [28" x
95"] tray and skim with whole sheets of newspaper, not little
strips as some do in smaller trays).
I happen to have some "virgin" newsprint that I got from a paper
distributor for wrapping, and using for "gluing out" in
bookbinding. Now that's a nice sheet of newsprint! Seems to
have more pulp, better pulp? better wet strength at least.
Perhaps it has more "craft" content? I wonder if it may "absorb
more" than my newspapers. Perhaps the newspapers are also
adding pollution (since it disintegrates), rather than truly
skimming. This is true both when the paper is "aged" for
months, or fresh from the press. I usually let them "age" as they
seem drier, and less likley to get black ink all over everything.
Has anyone else noticed this problem with the newsprint? A
paper anyone recommends? Printed on better stock than the
South Carolina State Newpaper.... Maybe I should get the New
York Times weekend? Do the tabloids- New York Post or the
Boston Herald, even the National Enquirer have worthwhile
On the other hand, there is another issue that I can think of too.
many companies have converted to using "earth friendly" printing
procedures. This includes using soy based inks, and using
surfactant waterbased clean-up products that are designed for
these "softer" inks (the "old way" was to use solvents). I know
that for some (black and white) potions of the paper, they are
using this, but still use the "toxic stuff" for the color printing. Am I
putting soybean oil in my tray?!? I tried to getthe end of the roll
from the printshop, and used that, but it still fell apart in the bath.
I never thought I might have to BUY my newsprint for skimming...
c'est la vie...
Wall Street is my favorite too. I made a contact with
someone who delvers them. I get the left overs.
As far as alum for marbling with Golden acrylics on
paper I have to make the solution stronger to get it
to stick consistently. I use 4 teaspoons per cup of
water. For fabric I use 1/2 cup to a gallon (1 1/2
teaspoons to 1 cup water).
--- irisnevins <irisnevins@...> wrote:
> Hey Jake....Wall Street Journal works like a__________________________________________________
> charm......my local paper
> shrunk too!!! WSJ is BIG!!!
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- --- In Marbling@y..., IrisNevins <irisnevins@c...> wrote:
> Funny.....nothing works the same for ANYONE in marbling....it'sreally a
> wonder it has survived at all, isn't it??I tried USA Today, but I had the same problem. Then I found out
that USA Today is actually printed all over the country in different
areas. Our version is printed here on the same press as the
local paper, on the same stock, with the same soybean inks.
Gee, this is like archival paper- great for longvity, bad for
Are soy based inks on newsprint our next issue?
Earth friendly- but bad for skimming?
I'll try the WSJ THANKS!!