I am deeply attracted to rust-dyed papers and enjoying reading about the technique. It usually seems to involve different combinations of tea, rusty stuff, paper bundles, and a cauldron, and I don’t have room for anything remotely that big, even in my studio, which is a scant 98 square feet and filled to the rafters with ephemera and tea cups. Recently, however, I found a method of dying papers that, while it lacks the eerie depth of mark-making with rust, it is pretty darn lovely; also simple and quick, which makes for near-instant gratification.

MATERIALS:

Ink (I use a variety of fountain pen inks and homemade walnut ink)

Medium to heavy weight paper or cardstock

Small sponge

A water mister

Ink, Sponge, and Mister

These pages are to be used for a sketchbook. Rather than cut them to size, I tore them, using a ruler as a straightedge. This torn edge is pretty as it mimics a deckled edge, and it absorbs the ink.

Tearing the Edges of Paper

Dip the sponge in the undiluted ink, then dab the edges of the page around all sides.

Now spray the page with the [read more]