Sunday, October 30, 2011
Ubiquitous Double Pinks
Before dyeing, the mordant, a colorless substance, was applied to the cloth by hand painting (the usual method for the calicos and chintzes produced in India in the 17th/18th century), woodblock printing or copper plate/roller technique. By altering the strength of the mordant, a lively 'double print' was achieved.
An alum mordant gave prints with shades of deep red through pale rose pink while prints from an iron mordant varied from almost black to lilac with all the shades in between. Once printed, the fabric was then processed in a madder dye bath to bring out the colors. A mixture of the mordants will give a brown print. Note double violets in the above block....seconds?