HNW - Medieval Dyes

Christina magdlena at
Fri Aug 28 13:41:23 PDT 1998

Dick Eney wrote:

> On Fri, 28 Aug 1998, Ghislaine Fontanneau wrote:
> >Can someone
> > give me advice on 1. finding out the fiber content of the material, 2.
> > washing it/preping it to be dyed, etc.
> It all depends on the fiber content.  If it's slick and shiny, and a bit
> stiff, it may be fiberglass - sorry.  If it's not fiberglass, you have a
> better chance.  It's possible that using Color Remover would work.  That
> supposedly removes almost all dyes.  At least it would fade them, and
> sometimes that's enough to help.
> =Tamar

You might also use the burn test to figure out the fiber content.  Take an edge
and light it with a match.  If the edges get blobby (like melted plastic), then
your fabric has some synthetic content.  If it smells like grass, it could be
either cotton or linen.  Wool will smell like burning hair.  I have no idea
about silk.  I've never run across fabric with a fiberglass content.  How does
that work?  Anybody else know how fibeglass behaves when burnt?

- -Magdalena


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