Friday, October 16, 2015

Boiled Books

The frenzy is on.   Started by online art  pals who brought this to my attention.     It wasn't the process that lured me in, but the wonderful organic look of the paper after the process is complete.      It's a project that I didn't need to go look for materilas other than in m y kitchen, studio and garden. 

The first three photos are from the first batch I made.   I think they turned grey because I tossed in what I thought was a rusty little tin thing - but now I think it was a faux rust finish.   So, the finish stained the paper.   I like it fine tough, it's subtle at least. 

Basically, it's using watercolor paper, leaves from the garden, a big art-dedicated pot water and vinegar.   Oh yes, a couple of ceramic tiles and a rock.    

Here is the link where I learned to do this.  Of course I varied it up a bit.    LOL

First I folded and tore the paper to sized to make little books the size of the tiles. 

 I have some good smelling things in my little garden.  Rosermay, Bay leaves, sage, thyme.   It will smell better than the last batch which was mostly oak and birch leaves.   

I gathered leaves and stems and arranged them in the books, sort of stuffing them pretty full in most places. 

According to people who know, you put a tile down and start bulding your book on top of it, by adding the greenery and twigs and leaves between the pages of the folded books stacking them together if small.

Next step is to position the upper tile on it and clip them together with clamps or such.  Not having a ready supply of clips, I opted to wire mine together as snugly as I could.  

The bundled stacks now go into a big pot of water, with
about 3/4 cup white vinegar.     Just to hold mind down better, I added a rock on top.  But figure once it starts bubbling away, boiling for 1 1/2 hours, it's likely going to topple off - and sure enought I just heard it do just that.     Oh well, I"m sure they'll  do fine anyhow.    

I'll post pics tomorrow.   The first batch I did two days ago, I left overnight in the bundles rather than open them right away.  I thought the colors might get more intense with longer exposure to the leaves.

You might want to try this before all the leaves fall.   Fall is here and they are starting to turn now.   


  1. Isn't it fun, I like your step by step photos, I wish I had done that so that I could identify the best leaves afterwards

  2. Wendy, I thought of that too. So on the second packet from the second boiling batch, I recorded it with photos and posted today. I knew I'd forget, and dont' want to keep using things that add nothing. It's easier to use photos and not lose my notes. LOL I was disappointed the rose petals left no color after boiling.