Hanji (Korean Papercrafting) Class #1


I had taken a couple of hanji classes with a co-worker’s mother at Rocketman’s work. Little did I know how much prep she had done before she came to my home. This time I am taking hanji classes right around the corner from Nan’s, my chilbo teacher.

This is what I made in my first class. My teacher, Kwang-Su, cut out all orange and green pieces for these plates as I watched. She used an Exacto knife and a metal ruler for a straight edge. I thought hanji was a whole lotta gluing but was I wrong. It’s more like a whole bunch of cutting.

The first step after the pieces were cut was to glue them to the plates. The outside edge was done first, then the inside edge and finally the centers, bottom center first and then the outside center.

The next step was the black design. This was a photocopy that she had pinned to two pieces of black hanji paper. Then she used a very narrow Exacto knife to cut the inside of the designs. She had me do quite a bit but it was really hard to cut through all those layers and not have a jagged edge. Her secret was to keep the knife always in the paper and turn the paper. She didn’t lift the knife at all unless she was done with a section.

It took me forever to get most of the inside done and she did the outside for me. I couldn’t believe how difficult it was. Then we laid the design onto the center of each plate and covered it with glue. She told me the glue was made of water and wheat flour. I didn’t get to take them home because they needed to dry and get a second coat of glue.


This is the outside of her shop. There were also two other women working on projects, one was Japanese and married to a Korean. Her Korean was flawless.


This is my teacher, Kwang-Soo Yang. Next week she said I would be making a box. She does seem to know a lot of English which helps tremendously.
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One Response to “Hanji (Korean Papercrafting) Class #1”

  1. CreekHiker / HollysFolly Says:

    Wondering if you felt the Earthquake??? Hope ya'll are OK!

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