Cutch Extract is produced by soaking the wood of the Acacia Catechu tree in hot water until a syrupy liquid emerges. It is then dries and ground into a fine powder. It ca be found throughout India, Burma, Indonesia and Peru. This extract is easily soluble in water.
Dye Amount: 20-50% WOF for a medium depth of shade
Color: brown, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove
Light fastness: Excellent
Wash fastness: Excelent
Alum mordant at 15% WOF for protein fibers
Alum mordant at 15% WOF for cellulose fibers
Tannin mordant is not required.
Dissolve the powdered cutch in boiling water and add it to dye bath.
Deeper colors can be achieved by first soaking the cutch extract in a weak mixture of caustic soda.
Add 1 tsp lye or sodium hydroxide to 1 gallon of water. Soak for 1 hour.
Add more water and neutralize with acetic acid or vinegar to pH7. Add this neutral solution to the dye bath.
Add fibers to the dye bath and simmer at low temperature for 2 hours.
Cutch does not easily exhaust and dyebaths can be used multiple times for lighter shades.
Alum mordant yields toffee browns.
The addition of iron at 2-4% WOF yields chocolate browns
Soda ash rinse will redden the cutch color.
Addition of 2% WOF hydrogen peroxide during the final 15 minutes of dyeing will darken cutch considerably.
Allowing the fiber to cool down and sit in the dye bath overnight will give the darkest shades.