Page 1 of 3

Resource: Authentic and cheap methods and recipes

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 10:54 am
by gregory23b
I would like to try a thread where we can put in info, recipes etc that are easy to do and not bank breakers but as accurate as possible.

Two main reasons

1) to further the uptake and sharing of more accurate portrayal and info as much as possible - to those that want it

2) to maybe address some myths as to why something A••••tic may not be doable because of cost or time

the latter is as important as the former because there is an automatic assumption that accuracy is expensive or nigh on impossible.


In this I envisage recipes, tips methods for either

making things for use at events

for doing at events - in a materials and methods sense

so some maybe tips on how to achieve a certain effect with modern technoology at home but the end result is spot on, the other for actually using and making with the correct materials at events.

I do not see it as ways of making a box to hide a fridge or work arounds, they are different things entirely in my view.

So if people have an interest in helping exchange and compiling info here can we sort out some system by which we can use the info.

Just state

date where possible

source

nation

or if an 'educated guess' based on other related info


This is not meant to be some pseudo academic thing but a compilation of useful tips we can draw from if required.

Any takers?

I will put some items in for discussion in due course. If it is any good we could ask for it to be a sticky as it its intention is a resource.

thanks

JK

edited

thanks Skev.

ps hopefully this is not about what defines 'authentic' or not but actual known processes and recipes etc

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:00 am
by Skevmeister
Sounds good to me.

Skev

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:31 am
by WhiteWolf
Skevmeister wrote:Sounds good to me.

Skev


and to me too.

It would be of great help to us new to the re-enactment lifestyle.

Skev

Any chance of making this sticky, stop it slipping down the board?

WW 8)

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:40 am
by Skevmeister
I but live to serve. Made into a sticky.

Skev

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:46 am
by WhiteWolf
cheers dude :D

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 2:02 pm
by Vicky
So, Jorge, do you mean things like:
Sally's tips on natural dyeing with weld and madder in a washing machine.

Methods of making oak gall ink, rather than using India Ink which looks and responds differently.

Ways of using a breadmaker to make appropriate bread.

...and at events, the old favourite of washing up using wood ash rather than trying to hide soap suds. (In fact all contemporary methods of cleaning things, from armour to laundry).

Contemporary ways of keeping things cool?

That the sort of thing you mean?

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 2:33 pm
by gregory23b
yep, especially where it hasn't been covered already although some overlap is more than welcome.

Even things like dyeing leather black

Posted: Fri Jun 09, 2006 11:54 pm
by Laffin Jon Terris
Authentic black leather:

half submerge some iron filings/steel wool/metal items in some water in a large (no-longer-needed) container.

Leave the steel in the water for as long as you can bear to (preferably days!) shake it up every so often to encourage the water to work on oxidizing the steel.

When you are reeady to use the miture, add some salt, shake the mixture again and apply to (preferably damp) leather.

This concoction actually reacts with rather than dyes the leather giving a solid black if done correctly- if in doubt experiment with time, salt etc.

I would reccomend trying this on scraps before commiting it to a finished project!

Posted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 9:07 am
by Lady Phoenix
Laffin Jon Terris wrote:Authentic black leather:

half submerge some iron filings/steel wool/metal items in some water in a large (no-longer-needed) container.

Leave the steel in the water for as long as you can bear to (preferably days!) shake it up every so often to encourage the water to work on oxidizing the steel.

When you are reeady to use the miture, add some salt, shake the mixture again and apply to (preferably damp) leather.

This concoction actually reacts with rather than dyes the leather giving a solid black if done correctly- if in doubt experiment with time, salt etc.

I would reccomend trying this on scraps before commiting it to a finished project!


We did this using iron tablets from the chemist, ground them down in a pestle & mortar and mixed with water, and then submerged the leather. Did hubby's bracer and narrow belt like this. Its not a BLACK black, but more a very dark grey. Works well.

Nix

Posted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 10:46 am
by gregory23b
Nice one john.

A fifteenth century recipe - Bolognese manuscript I believe, mentions using the black water from under the wheels of grindstones - the iron water.

I have used ferrous sulphate dissolved in water and brushed on the leather, it is a dark grey but when oiled goes much blacker.

Posted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 10:58 am
by WhiteWolf
Warning

Don't put a lid on the container. As the mixture ferments gases build up (if you use the vinegar).


Laffin Jon Terris wrote:Authentic black leather:

half submerge some iron filings/steel wool/metal items in some water in a large (no-longer-needed) container.

Leave the steel in the water for as long as you can bear to (preferably days!) shake it up every so often to encourage the water to work on oxidizing the steel.

When you are reeady to use the miture, add some salt, shake the mixture again and apply to (preferably damp) leather.

This concoction actually reacts with rather than dyes the leather giving a solid black if done correctly- if in doubt experiment with time, salt etc.

I would reccomend trying this on scraps before commiting it to a finished project!


You can also use vinegar instead of water. But you would need to neutralise the vinegar with Bicarb of Soda when you have your required depth of colour.

WW 8)

Posted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 12:22 pm
by Colin Middleton
The vinager is required if you wish to used this on cloth, but not necessary for leather as the tanic acid in the leather provides the acid. You'll also find that your steel tools leave a dark grey mark on wet leather too.

Be careful using this iron-black on cloth as it causes the fibers to rot, or so I'm told.

As for cleaning things, I use the ash and oil recipe that some-one posted on the old forums. Mix wood ash (preferably Beech) with Olive Oil and grind the ash down as fine as you can. Use this to polish your armour. The ash takes the rust off a treat and the oil leaves a protective coating.

Warning, this turns the inside of your mortar black and unpleasent. Apparently the same effect can be achieved with snad if you have any to hand.

Colin

Posted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 1:17 pm
by gregory23b
Colin, re the oil and ash, usually oil and ash result in a detergent effect - the basis for soap - hence its cleaning abilities, but I guess if a residue is left that is down to more oil than (ash) can be converted to detergent. But glad you mentioned it though as lye is authentic and cheap A and C as it were.


Use hardwood ash, sift the white ashes from any charcoal once cool of course, place the ashes in a tight woven cloth bag, leave the bag in some water - the strength of lye is dependent on the ratio of water to ash and the 'quality' of the ash, less water to ash and it is usuallty stronger.

Its natural degreasing properties make it great for cleaning cooking utensils, chopping boards etc.

It is also used as a bleaching agent.

Ash with a splash of water is great for cleaning out pots in full view of the public, again it degreases, any charcola in the ash is abrasive. Rinse and heat dry over low fire, add some oil to a cloth and give the pot the thinnest of layers of oil and heat until it smokes - this converts the oil to a carbon layer, seals the pots and wont go rancid.

Posted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:18 pm
by mary la reine
a fab idea for a thread, I wish I could think of something cool to share other than authentic 18th coffee - which is not much help.

as to the leather dying - i take it the leather must be untreated before you start?

Posted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:22 pm
by gregory23b
Mary, nothing wrong idea with that except start a new thread in the appropriate era, that way we get a series of era specific recipes and techniques, makes it easier to search for them, one reason why I started it in this era, a 17thc, and 18thc version would be just as useful.

As long as people try to put a name and source to the info it helps, one aim is to get solid evidence as well as sensible guesses.

Posted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 10:43 pm
by Laffin Jon Terris
Mary, I normally use this tip on plain, veg tan leather to good effect- I have used this mix on chromed leather to dull an almost day-glo colour once (I didn't get black, merely a thin shading effect!).

I should have said, use a few applications and remember to give the leather a good wipe down afterwards to prevent leaving black marks all over the place! :lol:

Posted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 11:53 am
by mary la reine
thanks very much for the advice am off to buy the equipment needed to dye - sounds fun!!!!!!

Posted: Fri Jun 23, 2006 10:15 am
by m300572
For black paint - crush charcoal to a fine powder. Iif you damp it before crushing you don't end up looking like a chimney sweep, you get fewer lumps and it doesn't blow away in the slightest breeze. Dry out slightly damp powdered charcoal and mix with linseed oil - paint onto item needing blackening.

Alternative to linseed oil is egg white - I have an Iron Age style shield painted with some of the Mulberry Dyer's red ochre and egg white - its a very orangy red.

Posted: Sun Jun 25, 2006 9:11 pm
by Cat
Clearwell Caves in The Forest of Dean sell natural 'ochre' at a reasonable price, orange, red and I think a greenish colour. If anybody is interested I can get hold of some good orange-red sandstone (pigment quality) for the cost of my petrol out to the disused quarry in the Forest. Let me know, I will be going out that way before the end of the summer.

Talking colours, Dave Moneyer has some beautiful embroidery silks naturally dyed at the moment. Well worth a look.

Posted: Mon Jun 26, 2006 3:46 pm
by gregory23b
mm Cat I would be interested in some red ochre and the green, pm me any details.

Hard to get hold of raw unprocessed pigments esp earth ones, so if they need preparing so much the better, make a very interesting talking point.

Nice one cat.

ta.

Posted: Wed Jun 28, 2006 9:32 am
by Jackie Phillips
Mediaeval fridge:

Place food items in a deep wooden bowl so that they don't reach the top. Take a piece of white linen (about 24" x 12" as a minimum), dampen it and spread across the top of the bowl. Place one corner of the cloth in a separate bowl of water.

The sun dries the cloth, the evaporation taking away some of the heat from the bowl underneath.

It doesn't go completely cold, but enough for a day's authenti-munching, plus it keeps the flies off.

Posted: Tue Jul 11, 2006 8:02 pm
by Marcus Woodhouse
Wow what a cracking idea. I shall try that with me kids. Well what I mean is try it at a picknick, God damn it you know how literally some people on this forum take things.

Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 8:08 pm
by Mark Griffin
excellent thread people. Anyone want my recipe for curing the Black Lion?

Posted: Wed Jul 26, 2006 9:28 pm
by Quayn
Marcus Woodhouse wrote:Wow what a cracking idea. I shall try that with me kids. Well what I mean is try it at a picknick, God damn it you know how literally some people on this forum take things.


LOL.

That's it.
Q.

Posted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:58 pm
by Cat
Gregory, got a bag of rocks if you're interested. Orange-brown colour, like fake suntan! Heavy as you like, so which event will you be at next?

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:24 am
by gregory23b
I wont be doing any more events this year (no more timetabled), but will have some friends at Bosworth, if you are going. My lot are William gascoignes Fellowship, you probably wont know Vicky and Neil but Mark Vickers is a guest so if you recognise him, Neil wont be far behind, let them know how much and they will pay you, I will sort them out later.

I wont need more than say two pounds/kilo of it, that goes a long way.

thanks cat, treasure.

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 10:50 am
by Chickun
I'll be at Bossie and can pick them up for you J if you like?

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 11:09 am
by gregory23b
ooh a competition ;-) yep as long as you let neil know and Cat can identify you, that would be grand.

ta fowl boy

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 12:53 pm
by Cat
Don't want paying, but will do a swopsie for a bottle of wine -to be delivered at some later date!

If the delivery-wallah can find me rather than me finding them, I'm CRAP at recognising people I've known for years, let alone people I know a bit. :D

Posted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 1:59 pm
by gregory23b
Fairy muff, what group will you be with and do you knwo where they might be?

Chickun? are you good at recognising cats?

Swap is fine, could be print if you wanted? have a couple of nice tinted st Catherines that might appeal (silver leaf or gilded nimbuses)....