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Lydia of Tyre: the first historical dyer

By Cheryl Kolander Actually, the dyeworks was in Sidon, down the coast a bit. Situated next to a year-round stream, and right at the coast. This location gave access to unlimited sweet water for rinsing, and provided an inlet where the men could dock their dinghies laden with shellfish. All this story hinges on a […]

“Tyria” or Shellfish purple

“Tyria” or Shellfish purplecopyright 2022by Cheryl Kolander, who IS Aurora Silk As a professional Natural dyer for 50 years I have done a lot of research on the shellfish or“Tyrian” purple dye. The following is a synopsis. It is important to remember Tyrian Purple or Mollusk Purple is a dye used from great antiquity.And this […]

The Beauty of Natural Indigo

note: all dyework illustrated is hand dyed by Cheryl Kolander, who IS Aurora Silk (author of this manual), except the traditional Central Asian embroidery in pic 5 and the traditional Oriental carpet of pic 7

SILK: Beneficial to the Planet and the Wearer

by Cheryl Kolander = Aurora Silk Essay in progress “Is silk sustainable?” I am often asked. “Silk is BENEFICIAL” is my answer. Here are some of the many ways that silk is BENEFICIAL to the Planet and the Wearer, (and as well the raiser and the processor.) 1) mulberry trees. First for silk you need […]

About Peace Silk

by Cheryl KolanderOriginator of the term and the only source for true Peace silk, at this time, on the planet. “Peace silk is silk that has been raised by Peaceful methods” This observation from one of my apprentices sums up the concept. I say: Peace silk is from cocoons from which the moth has freely […]

The Myth of the Bad Mordant

by Cheryl Kolander, Master Natural Dyer, Aurora Silk, since 1969 In answer to a question whether natural dyes, especially mordants, weren’t just as polluting / dangerous / bad as synthetic dyes. My perspective is that all synthetic, chemically produced dyes are terrible poisons.  They are manufactured from coal tar, which is what is left over […]

Colors: The Dyes That Make Them

Reds Scarlet = brightest flame: Cochineal with Tin. Crimson = “American Beauty” Rose Red: Cochineal with Alum. Magenta = bright rich red with a slightly violet tone: Cochineal with Alum, ammonia and possibly a pinch of Iron or Copper after. Christmas Red = Brazilwood with Alum. Magenta = Brazilwood with Alum and a pinch of Iron after. Oriental Carpet Red = Madder with Alum. Ecclesiastical Red = Madder with Alum and Cochineal over. Violets and Purples Logwood on Tin or Alum; or Tin and Alum. Indigo first, topped with Cochineal and Alum or Tin. Cochineal with Copper, or with Alum or Tin and Iron after. Madder with Alum and Iron after. Brazilwood with Alum and Iron after. […]

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