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Parchment Craft

What is Parchment Craft?
Parchment Craft is a creative hobby and by using various tools and materials on parchment paper you can create greeting cards, bookmarks, pictures, boxes and many different projects. Parchment paper can be seen as a kind of imitation parchment. This paper is transparent and has a light grey colour in its natural state. Because it is very strong, it can be modeled in numerous ways without suffering any damage. With the so-called Pergamano mapping pen and Tinta ink, patterns can be traced on the parchment paper which can then be coloured with any of the special Pergamano colouring materials (Perga-Liners, Perga-Colors, Dorso-Colors, Pintura or Pinta-Perla). You can then make decorative borders on the greeting cards and projects by using perforating tools, embossing tools, scissors and other Pergamano products. The degree of difficulty of the different colouring and perforating techniques varies, and this makes the hobby suitable for beginners as well as advanced Pergamano enthusiasts.

Origins of Parchment Craft
The creative hobby of creating paper lace out of parchment paper had its early origins in Spanish convents during the time of Christopher Columbus.  Then, the nuns used real parchment.  When Columbus discovered South America, not only did the Spanish church introduce religion to Colombia and other South American countries, but the craft as well.  Since then, the craft has not only developed beyond the original embossing and lace work, but to tracing and painting as well.

The Pergamano Materials

To do the best with any hobby one must use the right materials. For the past ten years Pergamano International, manufacturer of the Pergamano materials, has invested in the research, development and quality control to ensure they produce the best materials for the craft. Steered by a professional Design Group, people are continuously developing new Pergamano products and work to improve the existing products. The materials range from parchment paper, paints, inks and paint brushes, to books, magazines, stamps and several perforating and embossing tools. The high quality of the products is clearly visible in the end result.
Pergamano is a registered trade name for the patterns and materials used in  parchment craft.


As well as using the right materials you also need a clear explanation of the different techniques and the right way to use the various tools. This explanation can be found in the various books that Pergamano has published over the last few years. You might also consider following a course with a Registered Pergamano Teacher. Registered Pergamano Teachers have been trained through the International Parchment Craft Academy and therefore have the necessary expertise to guide students through to the high standard that is so essential for good Pergamano parchment craft.
The courses are usually organised at the home fo the tutors or in a clubhouse. Nothing  is more enjoyable than learning the tricks  of the trade and at the same time meeting people who share the same interest. Another advantage of tfollowing a course is that you are kept informed about the latest materials and new techniques. Registered Pergamano Teachers are kept informed of the latest Pergamano products and also follow further update training courses organised by the International Parchment Craft Academy.

Pergamano Magazine

The bi-monthly Pergamano magazine (formerly called Pergamano World) was launched in 1995 to keep Pergamano parchment craft enthusiasts informed about the activities and news of the craft. This 32 pages magazine generally contains numerous projects complete with patterns; full-colour illustrations and clear working descriptions.
There is also information about new products, lessons in techniques by registered Pergamano teachers, up to date information about workshops, exhibitions and demonstrations.

What the word Pergamano means

The word Pergamano comes from two words:  Pergamum and Mano.

Ø Pergamum is the name of a Turkish town around the time of Jesus Christís  birth, when the educated world wrote everything on papyrus produced in Egypt.  But when a  war between Turkey and Egypt cut off supplies of papyrus, the scholars of Pergamum had to find another medium to write on.  Experiments subsequently led to the discovery that the prepared skins of pigs and deer were excellent substitutes for papyrus.  And a new parchment medium was born, taking the name of the town where it was developed.

Ø Mano is the Spanish word for hand / handicraft.

The Parchment Craft Today

The hobby was first introduced to Holland by a Columbian lady, Martha Ospina.  While attending flower arrangement classes in Holland, two of her classmates noticed her paper lace cards and wanted to know how it was done. Before long, the craft became a rage, spreading like wild fire throughout Holland and Europe.

Martha Ospina has written a number of books on the craft. She has trained many teachers in Holland (known as Registered Teachers) to cope with the demand of people wishing to learn the craft. Today, the Pergamano craft has spread all over the world, including countries in North America, Australia  and Asia.

Pergamano Creations

Pergamano creations are made from parchment paper which has a number of characteristics which make the following techniques easy to carry out:

Ø Tracing out patterns
Ø Colouring with paint and ink
Ø Embossing (raising a pattern in relief)
Ø Perforating, cutting
Ø Dorsing (colouring the parchment paper on the back)

The craft is not difficult at all and anyone with an interest in the craft can achieve marvelous results.

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