Pergamano Parchment Craft Techniques
This is the first step in any Parchment Craft project. Tracing creates the guidelines for the areas of the
design that are to be embossed. Tracing is done using the mapping pen and ink. Parchment has two sides-one with a smooth surface and one with a rough surface; tracing is done on the
side with the rough surface because the ink more easily adheres to this type of surface. When tracing the mapping pen should be allowed to glide easily over the parchment, no pressure should be
used as this increases the amount of ink that is dispersed from the nib and may also create any unintentional embossment.
Embossing is the process of creating raised relief within one's design. Embossing is used to
create both concave and convex shapes by alternating the side on which the embossing is performed. Using the embossing tools and appropriate embossing pad, the parchment is rubbed backwards and forwards or side to side in parallel movements with increasing downward pressure so that the
parchment can be evenly stretched. A finished embossment will be satin-white in color and will contrast with the translucency of the parchment paper. Colour can be varied by
moderating the level to which the shape is embossed. Fine lines and hatching can be obtained by embossing with the stylus tool.
The single needle tool is used for stippling. Stippling is a
technique used for generating a matte white surface to areas or for fine detail work such as the centers of flowers. To create a matte white surface the parchment is first lightly
embossed and then small holes are perforated on the parchment in very close proximity. The perforation is done using a cardboard pad rather than a felt pad so that the needle will not pierce
through the parchment, but rather create an embossed dot.
Perforating is used to create decorative lace patterns in Parchment Craft. Minimal tracing is required when
perforating; designs are usually created by taping the parchment over a pattern and perforating directly over it. Various needle tools are used in the
perforating technique. Perforating is also used to create edging and borders or to denote guidelines for cutting.
Cutting is used in combination with perforating. Cutting is used with the 2 needle tool to remove shapes from
the design; it is used with the 4 needle tool to create crosses and strips within a lace pattern.
Colouring is a technique that gained popularity in Parchment Craft in the 20th century; before this, Parchment
Craft was originally only white work. There are many methods for colouring Parchment Craft work. One of the most popular is "dorsing". Dorsing creates a soft background colour for embossed
shapes or the areas around them. Colour is applied in the dorsing process using oil pastels or Dorso crayons which are rubbed on and then blended using paper
toweling and odorless mineral spirits or an oil based medium such as linseed or lavender oil. For colouring that is applied to the parchment in entirety, the colouring is done before any tracing
or embossing. If colour is to be added to small areas, dorsing would be applied in a similar manner to specific areas before the embossing process. Dorsing can also be done using other colouring
media such as felt-tip pens/markers, watercolor pencils, acrylic paints or inks.