Zwartko was born out of necessity; the essential need to recycle paper scrap from every nook and cranny that you can get it from & give it a second life.
The second life of this waste is arguably more beautiful than the first as no small amount of love and attention is added by me.
There is nothing complicated or difficult about making paper with your two hands, but after a short amount of time you realise that the paper pulp gets a bit deeper than the dried-up bits in your shoes & quite frankly, underpants.
The collection of forgotten papers fills me with flushed anticipation; oh that bright sparkly bit of craft paper or that crumpled up toilet tissue wrapper. I look for flecks of them in the mushed pulp to see where they will end up in their next life.
The meditative early morning pull, the quiet drip drip of the wooden mould and deckle into the giant pulling tub as the cool water runs off the mesh, fresh and full of purpose these mornings are.
The texture of it when it dries is indescribable, the miraculous natural cellulite glue shapes sheets in a brand-new form.
I found this craft accidentally, and it brings meaning to my life. There is nothing quite like adding energy to the lost and discarded and creating new meanings, new purpose.
I believe that any that experience this "hand-made" would or could never return to that of the factory, for you can see the rawness of it, the pure goodness of hard-earned human effort.
You try it, you will see.
We plant a tree in the Zwartko Forest
With every sale