Posted by: Karlee A. Turner | June 27, 2012

inside the CHS

Earlier this week I began working with a calico printer’s recipe book and a calico printer’s record. Though there are no indications either is from Connecticut, several of us at CHS have enjoyed paging through, looking at the various patterns and colors.

The printer’s recipe book contains over 280 pages, each with approximately four different color recipes. The recipes are accompanied by a fabric sample, pasted onto the page.

(Click on images to enlarge. They will open in a separate window.)

The colors and patterns shown vary greatly but the process is often very similar, many times referring the reader back to a previous color for instruction. They have names such as “olive for block,” “steam purple,” and “wash of pinks for blacks.”

Ingredients used include bark, berry liquids, pot ash, vinegar, water, nitrate of copper, and flour. Different colors required different boiling times, resting times, and finishing methods. Varying…

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