Before the summer is out I wanted to try making something with sunography paper. This is paper that is bleached in the sun and leaves a print of what you placed on top. I decided to rope my Little Button and her Grandpa in for this craft project and turn the results into a ‘back to school’-style notebook that would remind me of summer.
My Little Button and her Grandpa went on a nature walk around his garden looking for suitable flowers and leaves to place on the paper to make the print.
Once they had collected the flowers we flattened them in between two books and then carefully arranged them onto the paper.
We left the paper in direct sunlight for 10 minutes. We then removed the leaves and rinsed the paper under a cold tap until the water ran clear, then left it to dry.
Here’s what I learnt from this type of printing:
- Once you’ve picked your flowers/leaves, flatten them between two books. This will give a much clearer and more defined print on the sun paper.
- Any trace of wind in the air will move the leaves and disrupt the printing process. I learnt this the hard way after leaving it alone and coming back to discover the leaves on the floor!
- The longer you leave the print paper in the sun the stronger the image will be. The brand I used recommended 10 minutes.
- Direct sunlight worked best, not shade.
To make a notebook
You will need:
- Your sun print
- Thick card for front cover
- Neon embroidery thread
- Paper for pages
1. Begin by cutting out your sun print panel. Fold your front cover card in half and position the panel on the front. Attach using a small amount of glue in the centre.
2. Stitch round the sun print panel in neon thread using a sewing machine.
3. Arrange your paper for the pages and fold in half. Straighten up the edges with a craft knife and cut so the papers are 1cm smaller than the front cover on all sides.
4. To bind the pages and front cover together, make three holes equal distance apart on the middle pages through to the spine of the cover with a needle. Then start your thread from the middle hole on the middle pages and thread up to the top hole on the spine. Then thread back down to the middle hole on the inside and down to the lower hole on the outside. Keep repeating this process of sewing from the middle out to the spine and going up and down the spine. This will securely attach the spine to the pages. End with the thread on the inside and tie a knot in the thread.