The Hahnemühle paper mill was founded in 1584 to supply paper to the administrative offices of the Duke of Brunswick. In 1886 the original mill was named after one of its owners, Carl Hahne; his last name is also the German word for "cockerel," which became the company's watermark. The firm merged with Schleicher & Schüll early in the 20th century and continues operation today in Dassel (Germany).

The Hahnemühle Aquarelle papers are mouldmade, 100% cotton, neutral pH and buffered with calcium carbonate, internally and tub sized, air dried, two natural deckles, with the "shield and cockerel" watermark (the shield should be on the left). The rattle is subdued and rubbery; the paper burns to a powdery, pure white ash. Sheets and blocks are available in white, chamois or gray, in CP, R and an "Extra Rough" sheet with a unique "coarse canvas" texture, in a wide range of formats, in weights of 200, 230, 300 and 600 GSM. Price of a single 300 GSM full sheet is about US$4.45.

The Cold Pressed finish is subtly textured compared to CP finishes in most other brands, with a gentle irregularity to the surface that makes it responsive to detail. The hand is very silky and the surface is evenly absorbent to washes. The deckles are slightly larger and more irregular than usual, with pronounced scalloping and tearing along the edge. Color is a bright bluish white. Unfortunately the sizing is much too thin: wash strokes banded uncontrollably and adjacent areas refused to join smoothly, pigment texture was completely suppressed, and the paper wicked up a fat stain wherever the brush was lifted from the paper. Overpainting the wash caused unsightly wicking at the edges of the repainted area. Resists came off only with great effort, and left the surface damaged; scrubbing left a slight streaking. The green was impossible to lift and caused sluffing and extensive wicking at the edges of repainted areas. An interesting paper for calligraphic and single coat painting styles, but completely unsuitable for any techniques requiring washes, multiple glazes, corrections, or pigment lifting.


The Hahnemühle Albrecht Durer Watercolor is mouldmade, 25% cotton and 75% high alpha cellulose, neutral pH, internally and surface sized, two natural deckles, with the "Albrecht Durer" watermark. The rattle is medium loud and flappy; the paper burns to a powdery, pure white ash. Sheets are available in CP only, one size (91/2" x 121/2"), and one weight (300 GSM). Price of a single 300 GSM 91/2" x 121/2" sheet is about US$1.50.

The Cold Pressed finish (like the Aquarelle sheet) has a smooth, almost velvety feel, although it is slightly rougher than the Aquarelle. This is an exquisite little sheet, with a delightful upward cupping of the edges on the felt side and a regular scalloping in the deckles, giving it the appearance of a shallow porcelain dish. Color is a slightly bright medium white. The sizing is perfectly judged: the sheet took washes flawlessly with no banding (not even in the cobalt pigment), and displayed the pigment texture wonderfully. The magenta went on absolutely evenly without a hint of blossoming. Scrubbing left no marks whatever and the resists came off cleanly without damage to the surface. The green lifted completely with very slight sluffing, but no trace of wicking at the edge of the repainted area. All in all a superb sheet. If your painting style can fit in the miniature format, don't pass up the chance to give this little woodpulp paper a try.

Please see the page how to test watercolor papers for an explanation of my paper evaluation methods.

(300gsm CP)