Home :: ARTISTS TIPS :: Art Glossary

Art Glossary

Acid Free
Basis Weight
Bonding Strength
Chain lines
Chlorine free
Cockle (Crinkle)
Cover Paper
Deckle edges
Elemental chlorine free
Embossed Finish
Kraft paper
Kraft Pulp (Sulphate Pulp)
Laid paper
Lightweight Paper
Mechanical Pulp
Mould made
pH [p(potential of H(hydrogen)]
Post-consumer waste
Processed chlorine free
Rag Content
Recycled paper 1
Recycled paper 2
Rice paper
Tissue Paper
Tree-free fiber
Vellum Finish
Virgin fiber
Wove paper

Acid Free Paper that is free from any acid content or other substances likely to have a detrimental effect on the paper or its ability to last over time.

Alkaline Alkaline means "base." Anything that is alkaline has a pH over 7.0, and is considered to be free of acids.

Archival Paper that is not only acid free but also lignin and sulfur free. Most commonly used to repair and restore historic documents, the paper must be long lasting without causing deterioration to itself or other materials it may come in contact with.

Bagasse The fiber left over after extracting sugar from sugarcane.

Bamboo A grass yielding fiber used for papermaking.

Basis Weight The weight in pounds of a ream of paper. Its metric counterpart is grammage, where mass per unit area is expressed in units of grams per square meter.

Bonding Strength The strength of paper or board to withstand layer-to-layer separation. It is the force with which a coating or film adheres to the surface of a sheet.

Bristol A stiff, heavy paper whose caliper ranges upwards from 0.006".

Chain lines In a sheet of paper, the lines that run perpendicular to the laid lines. In a paper making mould, laid wires are woven together by very thin wire or silk threads; these threads form watermark lines, called chain lines, in the newly formed sheet.

Chiri A Japanese term for mulberry bark commonly used to refer to any paper with inclusions of mulberry bark.

Chlorine free Totally chlorine free applies to virgin fiber papers that are unbleached or processed with a sequence that includes no chlorine or chlorine derivatives.

Cockle (Crinkle) The formation of ripples, bulges, or warped spots on the plane of the sheet caused by uneven moisture, tension during drying.

Cotton One of the most commonly used plant fibers in the making of western papers. Also called "rag" or linters.' Cotton is the purest form of cellulose produced in nature and it requires the least amount of processing before it can be used.

Cover Paper A general term applied to a great variety of papers used for outside covers of catalogues, brochures, booklets, and similar pieces.

Deckle edges The feathered edges of a sheet caused where the pulp thins towards the edge of the deckle frame.

Deckle The wooden frame that rests on top of a mould and defines the edge of a sheet during hand paper making.

De-inkingThe de-inking process removes contaminants such as ink and glues from wastepaper in order to extract the cellulose fiber. Usually this requires extensive processing through a variety of pulping, screening, cleaning, washing, and/or floatation equipment.

Elemental chlorine free Elemental chlorine free applies to paper processed without elemental chlorine but with a chlorine derivative such as chlorine dioxide. Although less harmful than using chlorine, it is still not nearly as good as chlorine free.

Embossed Finish Paper with a raised or depressed surface resembling wood, cloth, leather, or other pattern.

Esparto A tough, wiry grass in the semi-arid parts of Spain and North Africa. This fiber produces paper that is smooth and soft.

Finish The finish of a sheet of paper denotes the condition of its surface. A high finish refers to a smooth, hard, surface. A low finish refers to a relatively rough, toothy surface.

g/m2 Paper weight can be measured in variety of ways. The most accurate, and most common for decorative papers, is in "grammage." whereby the weight measured in g/m2 refers to the weight in grams of exactly one square meter of paper. One gram is equal to .0022 pounds.

Grammage The mass of a unit area of paper or board determined by the standard method of test it is expressed in g/m2.

Hemp An older name for abaca, manila hemp is related to the banana plant; its leaf fiber is often used in paper making. Not to be confused with true hemp-cannabis sativa, or marijuana plant.

Kraft paper Paper made substantially from any kind of sulphate (Kraft) pulp.

Kraft Pulp (Sulphate Pulp) Any pulp made by the sulphate process, whose cooking liquor is mainly a mixture of sodium hydroxide and sodium sulphide.

Laid paper Paper with a prominent pattern of ribbed lines in the finished sheet. It is customary for the laid lines to run across the width and the chain lines to run from head to foot. The mould used to make laid paper has numerous narrowly spaced laid wires that are woven together by very thin wires or threads called chain lines.

Lightweight Paper Papers having a grammage (basis weight) normally less than 40g/m2.

Lignin The primary noncarbohydrate constituent found in wood; a polymer that functions as a natural binder.

Linters The short fibers that cling to cotton seed after the first ginning. These cotton fibers are too short thread spinning or clothmaking, but are useful in making paper pulp.

Machine-made Paper that is produced on a rapidly moving machine which forms, dries, sizes, and presses the sheet. This process forms an extremely uniform sheet.

Mechanical Pulp Pulp, which has been prepared from wood primarily by mechanical (rather than chemical) means of separating fibers or fiber agglomerates from each other.

Mould made A sheet of paper that simulates the look of handmade paper but is actually made by a machine called a cylinder mould.

Mould A flat screen with wire mesh onto which the deckle is placed during hand papermaking.

pH [p(potential of H(hydrogen)] The measure of availability of free hydrogen ions representing the balance between the acid and alkaline components of a material. 7 pH (pH neutral) represents a balance between acid and alkaline components; 0 pH is very acidic; 14 pH is very alkaline.

Post-consumer waste This is paper that has been used and then returned through a recycling program diverting it from the landfill. It is usually de-inked and then processed to make new paper. Office paper makes up the majority of post-consumer waste content papers.

Processed chlorine free Processed chlorine free refers to recycled paper in which the recycled content is unbleached or bleached without chlorine or chlorine derivatives. Dioxins and other toxins and pollutants created by chlorine and its derivatives are often referred to as chlorinated organic compounds. The dioxins have been associated with adverse effects on the immune and reproductive systems of human as well as those of fish and wildlife species.

Rag Content The proportion of natural fiber rag like cotton in a paper furnish.

Recycled paper Recycled paper can have several meanings. As recycled paper became more desirable, the need for a consistent definition became apparent. Almost all state and local government and business procurement specifications now reference the Environmental Protection Agency's guidelines on recycled paper. The EPA guidelines require a minimum of 30% post-consumer content for uncoated printing and writing paper, and a minimum of 10% post-consumer content for coated papers. Other forms of paper, such as newsprint and tissue also require post-consumer content. The EPA doesn't consider the unprinted trimming and converting scrap from paper mills themselves as recycled content.

Recycled paper Recycled paper, either pre or post-consumer materials needs to be washed and de-inked prior to being pulped. The pulp goes through a bleaching process to make it whiter. Once the pulp is bleached, it is ready to be transformed from paper soup into sheets. The first step is the paper forming portion of production. Then water is removed by pressing the wet paper between rolls and felts. Next the paper is dried, where the moisture content is reduced to the desired level. Now the paper is compacted and smoothed progressively traveling down a stack of steel rolls. This is called calendaring. Once completed the paper is stored in either rolls or cut into sheets.

Rice paper A common misnomer applied to Asian papers. Rice rarely plays a part in the manufacture of papers in Asia.

Salago A wild shrub native to Philippines which is harvested in a manner very similar to mulberry. Limbs are trimmed, the bark is stripped off and inner fiber of the branch is boiled and beaten to make it less absorbent. The amount of sizing in or in a paper determines its resistance to moisture. The more sizing, the less absorbent the paper, and vice-versa.

Tissue Paper Thin, soft paper made from strong cellulose fibrous materials and of a substance usually between 12 and 25 gsm.

Tree-free fiber Tree-free or Non-wood fiber is fiber that comes from sources other than trees. This would apply to daphne shrub, kenaf, hemp and cotton. These fiber sources are commonly used in other parts of the world, and can be cultivated here to help reduce pressure on forest lands."

Unryu Meaning "cloud dragon paper" in Japanese, Unryu is characteristic of paper containing strands of fiber that are added to the sheet to create contrast and texture.

Vellum Finish A toothy finish, which is relatively absorbent for fast ink penetration.

Virgin fiber Virgin fiber is fiber that has never been used before in the manufacture of paper or other products.

Washi From the Japanese wa, meaning "Japan," and shi, meaning "paper," washi refers to any Japanese paper, traditionally made or otherwise.

Watermark Localized modification of the formation and opacity of a sheet of paper while it is still quite wet, so that a pattern, design, or word group can be seen in the dried sheet when held up to the light.

Wove paper A type of paper with a smooth, even surface made using a mould with a fine wire mesh.