Bendable Paper

Bendable Paper

The Sunday Paper #94

Paper of the Week: DIY Bendable Paper

DIY Wire Paper

When you mix paper and wire you end up a new material. I’ve embedded wires in between sheets of handmade abaca paper for years (they stick to each other during the papermaking process). But recently, I got the idea of making this bendable paper with readymade sheets. Here’s how this sheet was made (and of course, there are many variations).

  • Cut two pieces of Thai Unryu to approximately 12″ x 25″
  • Cut 18 gauge brass or copper wire into (15) 16″ lengths
  • Make a mixture of glue: 1/3 PVA and 2/3 methyl cellulose
  • Place one sheet of the paper on a sheet of freezer paper and paint it with glue (you might need to apply glue a couple of inches at a time, because it tends to soak into the paper and dry quickly). Space the wires approximately 1-1/2″ apart and parallel to each other. Lay the second sheet of paper on top, place another sheet of freezer paper over everything, and apply pressure (with a sponge or your hand) to make sure the papers adhere, especially where the wires are. Remove the top layer of freezer paper and allow the bendable paper to dry overnight.

We made lamps with bendable paper in my workshop at Paperworks in Tucson this week. 


In the Studio:


I’ve been teaching in Tucson this week and found this heart image amongst the cacti.

Happy Valentines Day!


I love this: papercuts on the street!  A Brisbane Australia laneway has been transformed with vivid patterns and weavings to celebrate the city’s Asian heritage through street art.


I’m a sucker for legos and paper. Check out this paper airplane folding machine made from legos! I tried to get my son interested in lego robotics when he was little, but he and I both prefer just the blocks.

We’re lucky here in Colorado (Longmont to be specific, just outside of Boulder) to have the Above the Fold origami exhibit on view now through May 1st. Here you see Paul Jackson’s one-sided digital prints of the front and back surfaces of his hands. Through a technique of making hundreds of small slits and folds, parts of the prints twist to the back of the image, so the print becomes two-sided. And by the way, many of the artists are featured in a lovely film about origami by Vanessa Gould called Between the Folds.

(Paul Jackson / Courtesy photo)

(Paul Jackson / Courtesy photo)

I have a soft spot for paper flowers and recently came across an article about Ashley Cox of Paper Heart Blooms. If you are ever in need of everlasting flowers, this lady’s got you covered!


It is really unbelievable what people come up with. You know flipbooks? Well, here’s a flip book machine that flips those pages for you.


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  1. Those lamps are fab! Love them (and the paper is gorgeous).
    Thanks for sharing the ‘flip book machines’ – how much it would be have one of those to show off to people – and amuse myself when I was alone!

  2. Helen says:

    HI Tristan,
    Thanks for your comment! Yes, the automated flip book machines are pretty cool! I look forward to sharing more interesting paper tidbits with you. – Helen

  3. Kate says:

    I so love my Sunday morning news!
    May I teach the lamp making to my teens? Of course a credit to you?

  4. Incredible wire experiments.

  5. Ashley Cox says:

    Just came across your blog- thank you so much for the feature! 🙂