To Dye Silk Crimson Red

Take a sufficient amount of Venetian soap, dry it in the sun, grate it, dissolve or temper it with spring water. Afterwards take the silk, wrap it in a linen cloth, and cook it in this water on the fire for one-half hour. Turn the silk from side to side so that it will not be scorched. Take the silk out and wash it first in salt water and then in spring water. Once this is done, take for each pound of silk, 1 pound of alum dissolved in as much cold spring water as needed. Lay in the clean silk, wound in a linen cloth, and leave for eight hours. Take the silk out and wash it first in spring water and then in salt water and finally in spring water. Once all of this has been performed, put it into a dye bath composed of the following ingredients: Take the littler grains with which one dyes scarlet ('Chermesin' and called in Latin 'Cocci Grana') [Kermes] 3 or 4 ounces. Grind it fine, put it through a sieve, and put it into the kettle. Take as much spring water as will cover the silk to a depth of 4 to 6 fingers, and for each pound of silk take 3 ounces of ground gallnuts, or if you do not have gallnuts use 1/2 ounce of 'Arsenicum Christalinum' [arsenic crystals]. Cook it all together, and as it begins to boil, put in the silk. Cook it all together for 4 hours. Afterwards, take out the silk and let it dry in the shade. Thus, it will be very beautiful.

Citation Type  Fabric Dye Recipe
Citation Year 1677