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Getting colors from Mulberry Leaves



KUWA. Mulberry tree in English.
We all Japanese have been feeling familiar with Mulberry. Because Mulberry leaves are only foods for silk worms and you could see many silk farming-farmers here and there in Japan until before the World War 2. In fact, you can see " Mulberry Mark"(the right photo) in any Japanese maps as a common.

Although Japanese silk is well-known to all over the world with its high quality, Japanese silk farming is almost disappearing in these days because there are no successors.

KUWA is dioecim. Male and female has different shape of leaves.
I have a female KUWA tree in my garden and it has a lot of berries right now.

Last year I dyed some silk scarves with the leaves of my KUWA in the same season. I could get very profound dark greenish grey with iron mordant. My color therapist friend said " This color has a special power to ease people's pain and to remind them importance of having time to make a conversation with themselves."

Of course KUWA berries are good items for making jam or fruit liqueur.
At the same time we Japanese have been taking its dry leaves as tea traditionally. It is said that KUWA leaves includes much iron, calcium

I and some students in my dyeing class will dye with KUWA leaves again tomorrow.
We are going to try to get 2 colors from KUWA liquid with 2 different mordant : iron and aluminum.

I will report the colors later.

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