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15th century pink clothing, what type of pink?

Posted: Sat May 13, 2006 11:42 pm
by Quayn
Hello all,
I'm not the best person in regards to colour so I'm looking for examples of pink in regards to 15th century clothing. I've heard many a person say they will be sporting pink garments yet I've seen very few. (Being partially colour blind I've probably seen loads.) So Any help appreciated. What shades would be historically accurate? I can only assume an off-red colour from dyes that have passed their prime such in the same way as a grey would from a black dye. I've really little experience on the matter so please flood me with suggestions.

Thanks all.

Q.

Re: 15th century pink clothing, what type of pink?

Posted: Sun May 14, 2006 6:13 am
by Karen Larsdatter
I can't think of any extant clothing that's both 15th century and pink (at least, that were intended to be pink from the start, rather than garments that were once red that have subsequently faded to pink) ... and the illustrations that are springing to mind (it's kind of late here, but I might come back to this later) are January, April, and August in the Tres Riches Heures du Duc de Berry, and several illustrations in De mulieribus claris (BNF Fr. 598).

(Edited to correct the link to the BNF manuscript.)

Posted: Sun May 14, 2006 6:52 am
by matlot
if i can remember right the marquess of dorset thomas gray's livery was argent and pink

Posted: Sun May 14, 2006 5:47 pm
by Jenn
Pink is a very fashionable colour in the late 16th cent . That sort of decadent look that was very fashionable in the 1590s
however madder was a very popluar dye in the 15th cent (see Museum of London book - textiles and clothing for example). Madder gives you a peach colour

Posted: Sun May 14, 2006 10:09 pm
by Alice the Huswyf
C14th illustrations of Chaucer reading to the court show clearly a girl in a blue-toned rose pink houppelande (with a grey lining?)which would not have been a madder tone as opposed to a peach-toned shell pink which would have been a madder exhaust tone. However, think along the exhuast shades of a murray or burgundy dye and it would have been achievable.

Posted: Sun May 14, 2006 11:45 pm
by GinaB
Cochineal can give a beautiful pink colour - easier than any red, so I suspect wouldn't have been as expensive - brazilwood is even nicer, a very 'girly' pink, quite intense. However, how often these shades were/could have been used aren't my area, and I wouldn't like to speculate.
There's a fifteenth century fresco, an image of which is printed in 'Medieval Lovers, a book of days' with some pinks very like the cochineal pinks. of course, the colours may not be printed 'true' to the original.

[The picture credit is listed as 'Fresco, Francesco del Cossa, 15th century. Ferrara (Ph: Scala)]

Posted: Mon May 15, 2006 2:19 am
by Lindsay
This is dated 1567 but is still rather pink! :wink:

Image

Posted: Mon May 15, 2006 2:31 pm
by KatP
No specific examples, but a number of dyestuffs which would have been available give various shades of pink. All these examples are from an excellent book on dyeing (which I happen to have at work at the moment after experiments with madder!): Wild Color by Jenny Dean. It isn't historical, but medieaval dyers knew that using iron or copper pots would alter colours, and used mordants, so the principles still apply I reckon.

Fruitwood barks give various soft purply pinks, depending on mordants and colour modifiers used.
Elm bark gives pinky coral shades.
Safflower gives bright shocking pinks if alkaline water is used to extract the dye and the solution is acidified before use. Think safflower was available at the time (be surpised if wasn't given trade), and dye techniques were extraordinarily advanced in mny places. Getting the same pinks on silk is a little more complicated as the yellow component has to be eliminated first.
Woad seeds apparently give a soft pinky colour, but only if no mordant or modifier used.

Posted: Mon May 15, 2006 3:11 pm
by Phil the Grips
Are you sure they didn't say "pinked" clothing i.e. cut all over with lots of little snips ("pinking") to show the lining?

Posted: Mon May 15, 2006 3:24 pm
by Quayn
Thanks all, I'm sure if I stick to authentic fabric traders I'll be able to pick up a pink I like. As I say I'm not very good with colours so will just drag someone along so I stick well clear of purple tones.

Again thanks.

Phil, nope not pinked, conversation moved on to how pink became a 'girly' colour over time. But thanks for pointing it out just in case.

Q.

Posted: Mon May 15, 2006 3:57 pm
by gregory23b
Depending on your budget Quayn and your sewing skills, you might want to contact a dyer who would advise and possibly dye an appropriate colour for you. hand dyed cloth is not cheap, but it is good and an investment (almost literally I imagine).

Try

Mulberry Dyer

Posted: Mon May 22, 2006 10:15 pm
by Sledge
Hi Quayn

Pete (my other half) wears pink. First of all he had a pair of sage green and pink hose, and now I am in the process of making him a pink and custard yellow pair (his choice not mine). He also has a very 'nice' pink shirt.

Having said that - pink is a difficult colour to buy, and we have been very lucky that we have been in the right place at the right time and found a trader selling it.
8)

Posted: Mon May 22, 2006 10:17 pm
by Sledge
Hi Quayn

Pete (my other half) wears pink. First of all he had a pair of sage green and pink hose, and now I am in the process of making him a pink and custard yellow pair (his choice not mine). He also has a very 'nice' pink shirt.

Having said that - pink is a difficult colour to buy, and we have been very lucky that we have been in the right place at the right time and found a trader selling it.
8)

Posted: Tue May 23, 2006 7:23 pm
by Quayn
Quick update, I've been shown a few pinks but I'm not really as cheerful over them as I had hoped, one I see as a grey tone and the others seem far from the pink I was hoping would be allowed. will keep looking though.

Must admit would have to probably get someone else to make them up, my sewing is really poor.

Anywho, thanks all.

Q.

Posted: Thu May 25, 2006 8:46 am
by House of De Clifford
Hi, Drachelis has some nice pink wool, she has made a few items out of it, I'll tell her to pm yu. She can send you swatches of what she has

Miranda

Posted: Thu May 25, 2006 9:36 am
by Drachelis
Er................ actually I don't have any, any more - only had enough for a couple of garments - its now gone.

As far as colour goes - if one can get a dark colour from a dye then a pale colour would be available through a weaker solution murrey would make a vry nice pink - madder tends to the peachy colours.


Cheryl
Shadowlight Designs

Posted: Thu May 25, 2006 9:10 pm
by Quayn
Thanks, I'll keep it in mind when I'm shopping.

Q.

Posted: Sat May 27, 2006 7:52 am
by Annie the Pedlar
Noone has mentioned the pink you get from an exhausted woad bath. Waste not want not.

Posted: Mon Jul 10, 2006 11:11 pm
by Spinit
Or a totally different pink-/red from fermented once used madder.definitely not coral.

Posted: Wed Jul 12, 2006 4:59 pm
by Quayn
Hello all again,
I'll be putting off my shop for a few months as I've over spent and will be working off a bit of debt, though anyone with a firm identified pink in some 'authentified' picture, or description would be praised above many others.

Bottom line is, soon as I have found some pink, sooner everyone can laugh at that short guy in the pink doublet.

Q.

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 7:45 am
by Gwen
Various pinks are worn by a variety of men in Rene' of Anjou's Book of Love, as well as his Book of the Tournament. All sorts of pinks are represented, ranging from peach to rose. One of the Duke of Bourbon's "posse" is wearing a coral coat over a red doublet, and 2 of the Duke of Brittany's retainers are wearing what I would call pink hose. Several of the crests on helmets in the helm show sport pink and lavender mantlings. Several of the spectators are wearing lovely lavender coats- one wears a lavender coat over a charcoal grey/black doublet and red hose. Look in Rene' if you want to find pink or lavender and you won't be dissapointed.

I'm suprised noone's brought up the fact that pigments for painting are not the same as pigments for dyeing, so it's generally unrealistic to look for a dye colour in a painting and vice-versa. Additionally, colour is completely subjective; my office manager and I often go around about what to call colours. I refer to a roll of fabric in the shop as "red" and she insists it's pink because it's not a saturated red.

Gwen

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 5:17 pm
by Quayn
Many thanks gwen, I'll look it up, Main problem with me is I have to take said picture to a trader as I'm somewhat colour blind. Terms for pinks such as peach, rose, lavender means I can give them to a trader and they can show me what they have of these shades and I'll pick from there.

Very helpful for me and I'll get shopping as soon as I can.

Q.

Posted: Fri Jul 14, 2006 9:44 pm
by Gwen
Hi Q-

Please note my comments about pigment colours and dye colours not being one and the same. The colour an artist paints may or may not correspond to the colours achievable with textile dyes.

If I had the goal of having an historically believable pink coloured garment, I'd take my image to a reputable dyer and ask them to help me determine the kind of colour I was looking for. Once I saw the options, I'd ask for or purchase a sample swatch of fabric or threads in the fibre (wool, silk or linen) I ultimately wanted the garment to be made of. Then, I would take that swatch to a cloth seller and ask them to help me match the colour.

g23b is correct in saying that you can have cloth custom dyed the desired colour. This tends to be a more spendy proposition (at least here in the US it is!) but it is another option.

Moira Forsyth at Tinctoria- http://www.tinctoria.co.uk/
Sally Pointer - http://www.sallypointer.com/
or the folks at Mulberry Dyer http://www.mulberrydyer.co.uk/

are all very helpful sources of info on period dying and naturally dyed goods there in the UK.

I have 2 of Moira's sample books which I use in my work to colour-match my fabrics, and I find it to be one of my most used resources.

Good luck!

Gwen

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 12:05 pm
by Tuppence
and obviously, sally and debbie (the mulberry dyer) both poist on here (debbie as fishwife, and sally as, um, sally).

I'd suggest talking to them at some point.

Posted: Sat Jul 15, 2006 6:31 pm
by Quayn
The whole project is on hold at the mo. but your input is proving invaluable. I'm hoping to raise funds soon and get on to Mulberry dyer for an idea of achievable pink and from there go cloth shopping.

I'll keep everyone posted and hopefully at the end of it all have a nice picture or two.


Q.

Posted: Tue Jul 25, 2006 11:56 pm
by Quayn
Quick update for those watching, have picked up a loverly pink/black livery coat that will be unveiled at Bosworth provided it's not as hot as it is right now. It's for evening wear not on field. Also picked up some sexy pink linen that actually got a grown man to say eurgh. Loverly. :D

Hoping to line a doublet with it thus having a nicey dark colour outside with my scary pink inner. Joy. All praise to Ali at Berkley for the pink and not sure who for the coat but thank you ladies.

Let's see what the future brings.

Q.

Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 11:23 am
by gregory23b
Gwen

"I'm suprised noone's brought up the fact that pigments for painting are not the same as pigments for dyeing, so it's generally unrealistic to look for a dye colour in a painting and vice-versa."

It gets brought up a fair bit by YT usually, but not needed in this case.

Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 5:56 pm
by Quayn
Also we know that some clothing was painted a clolour to illustrate a point, white for purety etc. also let's not forget what a painter did to Richard III. Oops... can open... worms everywhere

Q.

Also My thanks goes to Chimera as it was they who sold me that lovery livery coat, many thanks.