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Thing-a-Day – January 25 – cooked gampi strips into string

February 7, 2015
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Day 25 of the Thing-a-Day Challenge

Materials: gampi bark (from the Thymelaceae or Daphne family)

Gampi is quite similar to kozo (which I will talk more about tomorrow) and has been used for traditional paper making for centuries.  When cooked (with soda ash), its fibers don’t hold together very well, so it is difficult to form vessels out of stretched strips.  However, it pulls into long fine strips quite nicely, so it is a good fiber, in this cooked but unbeaten state, for making a long strings for knitting, sewing, or weaving. You just have to be careful not to pull too tightly when the cord is damp or the connection points will come apart.

like kozo, gampi comes in strips about an inch wide, but is less coherent when cooked

like kozo, gampi comes in strips about an inch wide, but is less coherent when cooked

 

 

 

 

cooked gampi breaks into long thin strips quite easily

cooked gampi breaks into long thin strips quite easily

damp gampi ends twisted

damp ends of gampi strips easily twist around each other and then dry firmly in place, making it easy to create long cordage or “yarn”

this is what the gampi strips look like when dry - they are a bit brittle, but loosen up when dampened again

this is what the gampi strips look like when dry – they are a bit brittle, but loosen up when dampened again

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