ECO Printing with Fall Leaves
I have caught the next wave of natural dyeing. Eco printing with leaves by steaming them onto paper. I then sew them into handmade books. I love paper, I always have. I have rolls and pads and sheets of it all tucked away all over my house. I am slowly printing with all of it so joy of joys I will have to replace my stock when the next sale hits. This is super easy to do - collect leaves. I collect 4 kinds - Beech, SweetGum, Oak and Maples. I do however collect from different trees and from different times of the Fall season. Some of them have been pressed and dried and some are picked straight off the tree at the time of stemming. I rarely keep records as I have no intention of repeating what I get and live in the joy of spontaneity.
Here is a bundle of papers after its been steamed and the strings are cut off ready to be opened.
I also did run out into the dark to gather a few Ferns before the last hard frost killed them off and I was really happy with the results. Its a beautiful pattern of resist and nice yellow too.
This paper won't be stable as I threw some iron powder on it before steaming - its gives a really cool coppery color but Im sure the paper will rust straight thru to the next page so I will just look at it or hang it on the wall as is.
SweetGum Tree - one of my favorite trees. When it changes color in the Fall it does so with so many beautiful colors. Green, yellow, orange, red, burgundy to brown. Its just spectacular. All the colors from this one work really well for eco printing.
This one is a bit of a cheat - red onion skins :)
When you layer the papers with the leaves (meaning- no blank papers with no leaves in between) you get a mixed bag of prints all over the place, a print from both sides of the leaves. This makes it really hard if you get something spectacular on both sides of the paper. But then again that is great for book bookbinding.
I received the most beautiful colors this time around. This was done with dry paper but the leaves were soaked in iron water before I layered them out - only a few minutes - then steamed for 4 hours. I can never wait so I always undo the bundle before it dries. Happy Printing.