Notes & Queries. (1781) Cleaning and Dyeing.

Manufacturer and builder Volume 3, 1877

Liquid ammonia is the sub-stance used by all repairers of old clothes to take out grease spots. You must not only put on the ammonia, but must scrape away the resulting soapy paste and rub it off as clean as possible with a dry rag. A black dye is easily applied on faded black clothes by brushing alternately with a solution of logwood extract and then with a solution of sulphate of iron or coperas. Instead of the latter, a weak solution of bichromate of potash, used after the logwood extract, gives another shade of black. For blue or brown dyes it is not practical to make fast colors by a simple brush application; the goods should be boiled in the solutions. To dye coats and other woollen goods brown, they should be boiled for an hour in a solution of 1 ounce of bichromate of potash in 4 gallons of water, then wash out in cold water, and boil for an hour in a decoction of 6 ounces of peachwood and 3 ounces of tumeric in 4 gallons of water. For blue, dissolve 1 table-spoonful of liquid extract of indigo in 4 gallons of water, add a tea-cupful of sulphuric acid and a tea-cupful of glauber salts; boil the goods for about 15 minutes in this solution, and rinse in cold water. There is another objection to the brush application, namely, that it is impossible to apply the color equally - it always shows streaks and spots, and only boiling in the dye can give satisfactory results. Only on black clothes can the black dye be successfully applied by a brush no as to correct the faded grayish look which they are apt to assume when becoming old.

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