Momigami means kneaded paper in Japanese. Washi paper is treated with konnyaku starch (root of devils tongue plant) and then kneaded. Konnyaku is actually a food item in Japan. It's also called glucomannan, and comes in a powdered form.
Paper treated with konnyaku called momigami (kneaded paper) or kyoseishi (strong paper) is made both stronger and more flexible than untreated paper. Because the papers pores are coated it also becomes more wind and water resistant as well as having improved heat retention while still remaining breathable. As a lining for clothing momigami has often outlasted the textile which it lines. Paper treated with konnyaku can be crinkled up until it has the feel of cloth. The treated paper can be sewn on a sewing machine or by hand, to create paper pillows, wall hangings, and even clothing. fineartstore.com
You can buy konnyaku powder online at several sources. However, since I didn't want to spend a lot of money, I purchased a small package of glucomannan powder from amazon.com
I also bought some Thai unryu paper from our local art store.
I used a recipe from hiromipaper.com, scaling down the original measurements to a manageable amount. What I ended up with was a gelatinous mess, even with following the directions. I somehow managed to spread the goop, which reminded me of both jello and rubber cement, on one side of the paper, and then put it outside to dry. After drying, I re-heated my goop, and spread some on the other side. (Yes, I did try adding more water, and re-heating the goop. I added up to a cup more water, and it was still thick and lumpy. I used my whisking tool and the electric mixer, still lumpy.)
|This is how the paper looks before crumpling. I managed to brush those little bubbles off.|
When both sides were dry, I followed the crumpling up process that is described below.
So before you run to the internet for more information, I can tell you that there are several websites that give instructions for momigami paper, but they are using vegetable oil or tapioca starch. The oil, I can't understand, because you just end up with wrinkled, oily paper. Tapioca is close (cassava root), but not the same.
|Momigami Yes, it sheds water.|
If you have had better luck with the powder recipe, please let me know!