We use materials, methods and techniques from ancient times:


Written support:

– Natural lamb

& goatskin vellum

– Papyrus (for display)

Vellum reparation

– Pumice powder

– Resin sandarac


– Iron gall

– Brazil-wood

– Buckhorn

– Vine black

– Charcoal

– Walnut

Written instruments:

– Quail

– Reed

– Calligraphy nib pen

– Lead stylus of plummet

Gold Gilding

23 K gold and  Silver leaf

– Flat Gilding size:

Gum ammoniac & Glair

– Raised Gilding size:

(Cennini’s formula):

While lead

Sleek gesso sottile

Hide glue

Armenian Bole



– Egg Tempera:


– Ivory black

– Cinnabar

-Red ochre

– Ultramarine blue

– Yellow ochre

– Burnt umber

– Burnt sienna

– Verdigris

Book Cover

– Base: 2 pieces of 400

years-old certified

fallen walnut tree.

– Bone carved

– Semiprecious stones:










– Hand-blown glass beads

– Mother of pearl



– By hand


– Hand-written


– Elaborated by hand


Original paintings

using a combination

of ready-made egg

tempera & egg-tempera

done on our studio

by grinding historical pigments

and egg yolk


Ancient inks are handmade by chemist Lucas Tucker

Gold Gilding

– Flat Gilding

Size: Gum ammoniac & Glair

– Raised Gilding

Size: Cennini’s formula

Glass beads

Hand-blown by the Royal Glass Factory of La Granja Granja (Spain), one of the oldest glass factory in Europe.


Following the ancient handmade tanning process that has remained very much unchanged over past 13 centuries, skins are scraped, clean and soaked in water, lime, and other natural acids to clean and remove all of the hair, fat and other tissue from each hide.

After that, they are dried and stretched on wooden frames. They are hand-polished and honed on both sides and finally cut and sorted based on quality and intended use.

Only the best skins are hand-picked, one by one (see Ramón at the tannery). Stretching and framing them on a wooden frame using ancient tools is a delicate and gentle craft. Any crack or tear turns the skin unusable.

Ramón at the tannery

Parchment washing

Parchment scraping

Parchment is a writing material with a long and arduous manufacturing process, as the skin of the lamb from which it’s made – usually lamb, goat, sheep or ram -must be treated specifically to make it a useful and lasting material. Its name comes from Pergamum, a city of Asia Minor, founded by Phileterus in 238 B.C.

According to the Latin writer Pliny, King Attalus I founded the library that reached its apogee with King Eumenes II (197 to 158 B.C.); it held 200.000 volumes in it. This library competed with Alexandria’s in such a way that, according to tradition, the Egyptian king Ptolemeus Philadelphus stopped supplying papyrus to the city of Pergamum. As a result of that the city of

Pergamum developed and improved the manufacturing of this writing material to replace the papyrus. Nevertheless, the first evidence of the parchment use is very old: it dates from 2700 – 2500 B. C., during the fourth Egyptian dynasty.

According to Herodotus and Ctesias, it was widely used among the Persians, though the oldest preserved scroll is from the second century B.C., it contains a Greek text and comes from Dura Europos. Among the Greeks it was known as dipthéra and among Latinos membrane, the name that was commonly used during the Middle Ages, as the one of charter membranacea.

The name of parchment comes from the expression membrane pergamenea, that was first used in the edict of Diocletian 301 B.C., known as the Edictum de pretiis rerum venalium; the term pergamenum was used by St. Jerome (330 – 420). The parchment was the favourite writing material in the third and fourth centuries, until the introduction of paper by the Arabs in Europe in the late eighth century. After its spreading, it remained as the preferred material for illuminated manuscripts for a long time.

The method that has been used to obtain the parchment starts with the selection of skins, one by one, when they still have wool and hair. Once the skins have been selected, they will be soaked in a solution of water and quicklime for a long time, stirring them periodically to wet them all. After this stage, and with the skins still moist to facilitate the work, they are scrapped manually, using sickle blades or curved blade knives as tools, and removing all traces of flesh that might remain.

This is a job that requires much experience and skill to avoid damaging the skin while performing. After this operation, the skins are soaked again, without wool, hair or flesh, in clear water for several days to be thoroughly cleaned and free of lime. The drying process is done by tightening the skins one by one on a wooden frame to control its thickness and maintain the parchment’s uniformity characteristics. During this drying period the skin is polished on both sides with a pumice stone to achieve a natural smoothing. After the cleaning and the selection of thickness and colour have been made, a natural resin is applied over the skins to facilitate the fixing of gold and inks.