Griffin Dyeworks & Fiber Arts

Understanding Mordants and Modifiers

Alum-Tannin-Alum (ATA)

Alum-Tannin-Alum (ATA): Traditional mordant for cellulose fibers, but more effective if using aluminum acetate or ammonium sulfate instead. This process may seem very involved but it's well worth the effort; try it!

#1 Pot: Fill pot with 1 gal water, 3 tbsp alum, gently simmer well-soaked fiber 1 hr. Cool in mordant pot several hours
or overnight to improve the mordant. No rinse needed before next step.
#2 Pot: Fill pot with new water, add 1/2 c soda ash, 2 tbsp tannin, simmer fiber 30 minutes. Cool in tannin bath several
hours or overnight. Rinse thoroughly.
#3 Pot: Repeat step 1, adding 4 tbsp alum. Rinse until no cloudiness shows in rinse water. Keep fiber wet until ready
to dye. For darker dye color, rinse fiber in hot ATA mordant 20 min, rinse, dye again. When desired color is reached,
wash fiber, rinse well and air-dry.

CODES: c = cup; gal = gallon; lb = pound (weight); tbsp = Tablespoon; tsp = teaspoon / [AF] Anglo-French; [Ar] Arabic; [AS] Anglo-Saxon; [Dan] Danish; [Du] Dutch; [Fr] French; [Ger] German; [Gk] Greek; [It] Italian; [L] Classical Latin; [LL] Late Latin; [ME] Middle English; [ML] Modern Latin; [OE] Old English; [OF] Old French; [ON] Old Norse; [OS] Old Saxon; [Port] Portuguese; [Sp] Spanish; [Sw] Swedish / CE = Common Era; BCE = Before Common Era

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