This week I bought a piece of handmade Japanese Kozo, cut it up into 10 pieces and then made my own momigami, or “strong paper.” This is done by coating the sheets with konnyaku starch, which comes from the Devil’s Tongue root. It’s a powder you mix with water, brush on both sides of the paper and then crumple the paper into a loose ball.
While the paper is still damp you crumple it more and work the surfaces together. The more you work with it, the more like cloth it becomes. Then spread each sheet out to dry flat on a table.
This treatment makes it receptive to dyes, and easy to stitch. I get my kozo and konnyaku from Wet Paint Art in St. Paul, and they get it from the Japanese Paper Place in Toronto. (Check my Resources Links.)
I wanted it flat (not perfectly) so I could mount my silk pieces to it, so I ironed it. I really like the wrinkled surface and the color of the kozo. And it’s a dream to hand stitch.
This Saturday and Sunday I’ll be at Loring Park Art Festival.