Mulberry Papers

Mulberry (Saa) Papers

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Handmade Mulberry Saa paper sheet with 4 genuine deckled edges.

Sheet size: 560 x 780mm Paperweight: 75gsm

For over 700 years Sa-Paper has been made in the Northern Thailand, from the light brown bark of the Sa-tree (Broussonetia Papyrifera Vent). Due to it strength, versatility and longevity over the centuries it has been used for many purposes including Buddhist scripts, temple decorations at festival times, umbrellas, fans and kite making. In former times it was used as a filter in the manufacture of lacquerware.

The fast growing tree is coppiced and the bark stripped from the saplings and dried, the smallest branches of 25 – 75mm (1-3 inches) thickness produce the best quality bark. Once cut these trees are quickly replenished and can be cut again the following year, while the tree it self lives its natural course, making this a very sustainable form of paper production. The bark is thoroughly sun dried to remove natural sap, then soaked in water, until it is soft and pliable, Then it is to boil for several hours in huge drums in a mixture of water and caustic soda. The soda causes the fibres to breakdown even further and also bleaches them to an off-white colour this is the natural colour of Saa paper.

Tissue Paper is made by placing the pulp in large vats to dissipate, whereby the frame is 'washed' in the vats and small fibres are captured on the screen. Thicker grades of Saa paper paper is made by rolling the pulp into balls for manual spreading onto a bamboo frame with a cotton screen. The paper forms naturally on the frames, which are placed in the sun to dry, before being peeled from the screens in sheets.

Commercially one of the largest producers of Sa-paper in the world is Japan. The Japanese buy large quantities of the raw material and also the paper from Thailand and use it to make a variety of speciality products for home consumption and export. Sa – bark is also obtained from Lao. Aside from being a natural medium on which to paint or draw, Saa paper is excellent for gift wrapping of all kinds.

*ALL WRAPPING PAPERS WILL BE POSTED IN A TUBE.