Trinity College Library in Cambridge explain in their blog the differences between marbled paper, trickle paper, silhouette paper, surface color paper, and sprinkle paper. “Trickle papers are made when coloured or uncoloured liquid has been purposely dropped or sprinkled and allowed to trickle downwards, leaving traces on the paper surface. Other — less usual or outdated — terms are dribbled paper, drizzle paper or trickle marble. In the Dryden Album, there are three variations of trickle paper. These papers are too old to be European — western trickle papers were very popular in the 19th century — so it is very likely that they are of Turkish origin.”  You can see how you could do this, but I can’t find any information online about what liquids might work best. The word trickle seems to have been taken over by the software industry, as so often seems to happen with old jargon nowadays.


The examples Trinity shows us all come from The Dryden Album, a collection of Greek and Turkish costume illustrations dating from the 17th century. An account of the origin and content of the Album may be found at an earlier post, by William Kynan-Wilson. The entire volume may be examined here.

Modern examples of trickle paper can be seen and purchased at the Susanne Krause section of Dirk Lange Handmarmorpapier, a German website. Ms Krause it is who provided Trinity College Library with the information in their post. She is co-author of a tri-lingual (German, English, Dutch) book with Julia Rinck, Decorated Paper–A Guide Book (Stuttgart, Hauswedell 2016) which may tell you how to do these things. Amazon Germany offers it for 129€.

See also Marbled papers, and Making marbled papers.