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How are marbleized end papers, note cards, and fabrics created?

Learn the basic technique and materials that go into marbling.

Marbleized stationary adds a touch of class to papers and note cards. [©Shutterstock, 2010]
©Shutterstock, 2010
Marbleized stationary adds a touch of class to papers and note cards.

Marbling Technique:

The basic technique of marbling is simple. In a shallow pan of gelatinous medium, paints or inks of different colors are floated to form a surface film of colors that when raked and swirled with combs, picks, or other simple tools form a design. A pretreated piece of paper or cloth is placed gently on the surface of the medium to pick up the medium. A rinse in clear water removes excess paint. Most paints or inks need to be set by resting and heating with an iron. The pan of medium is quickly skimmed with strips of newspaper and is ready for the next print.

Materials for Marbling:

A medium made of carrageenan and water, a cloth prepared with an alum solution, and acrylic paints diluted with water and mixed with a surfactant such as oxgall (used by artists to thin paint) are all effective materials.

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