MAIN MATERIAL: Paper mulberry + Natural formation aid + Clean water

Dak  (Paper mulberry)
Dak is the Korean name for paper mulberry. It has grown in much of Korean peninsula since ancient time. Scientific name for the most popular Dak used in paper making is Broussonetia Kazinoki Sieb and Broussonetia papyrifera Vent.

Dak is harvested between November and February before the fiber stiffens. Compared to paper mulberrry found in warmer regions of Asia, Korean Dak is known for its long, flexible, and strong fiber. There are different grades of paper mulberry. Best grade is called Cham Dak. This does not refer to one of the species of Dak. Rather, it is a term used for Dak with the best qualities for making paper. Cham Dak translates to 'true paper mulberry'. FIDES supplies Hanji made with the highest quality Cham Dak.


Dak tree

Dak bark

Roots of Hwang Chok Kyu plant

Hwang Chok Kyu   (Natural formation aid)
Natural formation aid is extracted from the roots of a hibiscus plant called Hwang Chok Kyu. It is harvested during May to June. Scientific name for it is Hibiscus Manihot, Linne, or Abelmoschus manihot. Hwang Chok Kyu roots are cleaned and pounded until cracked open. These roots release natural formation aid, Dak Pul, when soaked in cold water for 2-3 hours. This liquid consists of water, lime, sugar, starch, arabinose, rhamnose, galactouronic acid, galactose, lignin, and protein. Temperature is key to maintaining the right viscosity. This magical solution keeps Dak fibers suspended in the vat and prevents long fibers from tangling. Dak Pul allows the fibers to flow freely and evenly across the screen in formation process and helps to separate the wet sheets from the stack later. FIDES 1000 and 5000 series Hanji are made exclusively with this natural formation aid.

Traditionally, papermakers used water from clean creeks for Hanji. This is why villages that had water supply free of iron or any other impurities came to pruduce best papers. Iron is often the main cause for discoloration of paper. FIDES represents Hanji from paper mills in provinces of South Kyung Sang, Kang Won, Kyung Ki, and North Choong Chung, where long tradition of quality Hanji is still alive.