I’ve always loved the patterns that marbling creates. I know I did some when I was younger but can’t remember what materials I used. More recently I tried the technique using nail varnish to create amazing patterns on my finger nails. But when I stumbled across Jemma Lewis Marbling and Design on Instagram I was bowled over by the beautiful papers she creates and wanted to try it myself.
Jemma uses a technique called Turkish marbling which uses Carrageenen Moss as a solution for floating your paints over. She also sells a starter kit with all you need to get started. Here’s my marbling journey so far!
Marbling is messy. We have a small balcony which is basically a dumping ground and place for Matthew to spray designs onto tennis rackets. So I took over his spot.
To make up the solution you need either a blender that you won’t be using for food or a mixing bit and a drill. You have to make it the day before you are going to use it and leave it overnight to develop.
Once that’s done, prepare your marbling tray (I used a cat litter tray which is suitable for A4 sheets), and a solution of Alum which is what you need to treat your paper with to make the paint stick to it.
Next I prepared my paints. This is actually the trickiest bit because you need to dilute the gouache or acrylic paint and add an expander, but you don’t really know if it’s the right consistency until you start marbling.
Then it’s time to start marbling!
As a first foray into the craft I am delighted with the results. I kept getting white lines across my papers diagonally which Jemma kindly advised are ‘hesitation lines’. In other words: get that paper down quickly and stop hesitating.
It’s not just paper that you can marble. I’ll be posting soon about what else I’ve been doing or you can have a look on my Instagram @hannah_is_sewing.