Would you love to paint on the water?

We invite you to our cave atelier to experience this 500 years old Ottoman Art. Besides exploring this traditional art, you will have opportunity to make your own craft as memory or a gift for your friends from your Cappadocia visit. None of other gift can be in that value.


One of the most common methods of decorating, bookbinding the endpapers of hand-bound books is Ebru. Classic Turkish Ebru, which is also known as Turkish marbled paper, is made by drawing designs with paint on water, and then carefully placing paper (or materials, such as glass etc.) on the surface of the water in order to absorb the paint Ebru seems magical, and yet it is improbably simple. The basics haven’t changed very much over the past several hundred years. It still involves depositing bits of color on the surface of water (to which a thickening agent has been added) and arranging those colors, through the use of combs or other implements, into patterns that are then transferred to a sheet of paper. It is fairly simple to follow a manual and produce a sheet of marbled paper, just as one can also follow instructions and produce a sound by drawing a bow across the strings of a violin. In each case, one will get results, but the results may not be pleasing. With marbling, it takes practice to learn the proper amount of thickening agent to add to the water so that the colors will float and some experimentation to create pleasing patterns. Placing and removing the paper to be marbled from the surface of the water also requires delicacy.


  • “Ebru is the dance of color with the water”. We start making ebru by preparing our kitre(Liquid).
  • It takes us about 3 days to prepare our kitre (a gum like substance). (You will have it ready but will get information about all steps to prepare it.)
  • The amount of water needed depends on the technique we will use.
  • After getting the right mixture, we close our tray with a paper so that it doesn’t dry.
  • We need to stir and mix our pigments with a special technique to make the paints. We will decide our colors to use in our own papers.
  • We take a teaspoonful of paint to and put in an empty jar
  • In order to ensure that the paint stay above the kitre and to control the size of paint drops, we need to pour a little water and ‘sigir ödü’ (ox-gall) in the paint.
  • The marbler drops the paint onto the surface of the water, but not arbitrarily; each type of ebru requires different drops
  • Ebru marblers make their own brushes.
  • Next, the participants produce their homemade horsehair brushes to use for their arts.
  • After drawing the desired pattern, the tray is covered by an offset paper which is half to 1 cm smaller than the tray
  • The marbler needs to be careful that there are no air bubbles between the tray and the paper when laying the paper on the water
  • After 5-10 seconds, the paper should be taken from the tray
  • The paper should be laid out on a clean surface to dry
  • To make Ebru properly, it is imperative to receive training from a master (usta) Ebru artist.
  • Each drop of paint on the water transferred onto a paper cannot be called Ebru. Ebru is a very mystical art and it needs to reflect the soul of the marbler.
  • Each pattern can only be transferred to a paper once; that is why every piece of Ebru is original and unique.
  • The marbler drops paint onto the tray, executes a preset pattern but is not sure of what the results will be on the paper (in other words there is an element of surprise). Hence, each transfer from the tray to the paper excites the artist. Ebru requires patience, but the final piece thrills the marbler20141108_152059DSC_284467