Classes & Workshops

Classes at paper THINK tank are held on a monthly basis, but Nicole is also available for demonstrations, tutorials, and special workshops (with a mobile papermaking studio!).

2016 Summer Workshops at paperTHINKtank

Islamic World Hand Papermaking

Special Instructor: Radha Pandey
Co-hosted with The Soapbox: Community Print Shop & Zine Library
Sunday May 22, 10am – 4pm, 8 students,     $150

$125 Soapbox members / $135 non-members REGISTER NOW**
**Registration and payment for this workshop is being handled by The Soapbox, and the link above will take you to The Soapbox website.

Islamic world papermakingDespite its 1200-year history, Islamic world or Arab style papermaking techniques are not well understood in the West. In this 1-day workshop students will experience the unique steps involved in Islamic papermaking — learning how to dye dried sheets, as well as surface sizing and burnishing. Participants will take home a selection of papers made during the workshop. Radha Pandey will guide students in how these beautiful multicolored, smooth, burnished sheets are produced, and provide insights into the history and culture behind them.
All necessary materials will be provided.

Radha Pandey is a papermaker and letterpress printer from New Delhi, India. She earned an MFA in Book Arts at the University of Iowa Center for the Book in 2014. She traveled extensively to investigate Islamic papermaking techniques in India between 2012-14 as part of her studies, and has since undertaken her own research on the essential tools of Islamic-style papermaking including moulds and chapri weaving. Her expertise also includes traditional textile hand-printing in India, and stop-motion animations in paper. Her artists books are held in public collections including the Library of Congress and Yale University.
Currently, Radha is the Studio Coordinator at the Morgan Conservatory in Cleveland, OH, where she is developing Islamic-style papers for applications in book arts and conservation.

Open Papermaking Studio

Sunday June 12, 1pm – 5pm, 8 students, $50 REGISTER NOW

This workshop is for those folks who are familiar with the papermaking process, and just want a day to make all the paper their heart desires! I will provide 3 different paper pulps — cotton, kozo, and abaca–, along with additional vats for any mixing.
If you want to register for this class, but have a request for a different fiber, please e-mail me, or make a note of it when you register.

From Plant to Paper, Paper to Book

A two-day workshop at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education
Taught by Nicole Donnelly, in partnership with The Soapbox
Friday July 15th, 5pm – 8pm
Saturday July 16, 11am – 4pm

REGISTER on the Schuylkill Center website, $75

In this two-part workshop, participants will learn the process of making paper by hand beginning with the plants themselves growing at the Schuylkill Center. On day 1 of our workshop, we will take a walking tour of SCEE’s grounds to identify and collect specimens of various invasive plants suitable for papermaking. Bringing these back to the classroom, we will learn how the fibers are prepared before being beaten into paper pulp. On day 2, students will spend half the day forming sheets of handmade paper from our collected plants (this is a wet process!), and in the second half of the class, we will use premade sheets of plant paper to sew into our very own handbound books.

Papermaking with Native and Invasive Plants

Sunday August 14th, 1pm – 5pm, 8 students, $75 REGISTER NOW

In this one-day workshop, participants will learn about native-agressive and non-native invasive plant species growing in the Philadelphia area and how to make paper from them. We will begin with an introduction and identification of collected plants, learn about their preparation before becoming paper pulp, and using these fibers we will make a variety of handmade papers. Some experience with hand papermaking is recommended, but beginners are encouraged as well. It will be a fun day of experimentation with texture, color, and of course smell. Engage your senses!

All classes take place at:

3240 Collins Street / Studios at The LOOM
Philadelphia, PA 19134


Nicole Donnelly is a papermaker, visual artist, and independent teacher based in Philadelphia, PA. She is the President of IAPMA, 2015-17,(International Association of Hand Papermakers and Paper Artists). She is also a co-organizer of the Hand Papermaking Community Documentation project, and is published in Hand Papermaking magazine (Winter 2013). She is the founder of paperTHINKtank, a member of the Friends of Dard Hunter, and a board member of The Soapbox: Community Print Shop & Zine Library. While she holds an MFA in painting, she studied hand papermaking with Timothy Barrett at the University of Iowa (2008-09) and fell in love with the process. Her artwork is focused on the environmentally sustainable possibilities and beauty of handmade paper.