I attended a short session of making washi paper yesterday at Oriental Art & Cultural Association.
According to the craftsmen from Japan, the ingredients used for Echizen Washi paper are mainly Kozo, Mitsumata and Ganpi.
Process of Making Paper
1) Steeping & Washing - to steep barks into pure water for 10 hours to make the barks soft.
2) Boiling - To boil the barks into the solution liquid for 1-2 hours to melt the main components and let them cool, then proceed with washing away of impurities.
3) Removing harshness & dust off- To float 1-2 barks on the water and remove the harshness and dust by hand.
4) Beating - To beat the fibers. Well beaten fibers will become strong paper. Only perform by skilled person.
5) Paper Making - To scoop the wood pulp by screen and reed and to spread them, swing and scoop for few times and leave it on the bar.
6) Compression & Dry - To compress the paper not to change its shape carefully and dry them one by one.
7) Finishing - To select the paper, polish, cut and wrap.
Basically at the work shop, we are giving chance on trial making the washi paper (as step 5 above), to decorate (with dried leave and flower) and dry the paper on heating board.
My finished deco. washi paper.