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Cochineal-dyed handspun wool on cochineal dyed silk

Buy Cochineal Natural Dye


The Cochineal Dye website sells cochineal for dyeing textiles and fabrics, handmade paper, leather and wood, etc.

Whether you want to buy 10 grams or 1 kilogram, or more, you can buy first quality Peruvian cochineal natural dye here. Buy your cochineal dye here!
 



Dyeing with Cochineal


Crushed female cochineal insects produce a deep crimson natural dye that can be used to produce a range of scarlet, red, pink and orange hues.

Cochineal is one of the most important traditional natural dyes in central and south America to dye textiles and produces intense colours with wool fibres but it has also been used on cotton, agave and other fibres. In Mexico it still used to dye traditional woollen and cotton textiles.

Learn how to dye wool and silk with cochineal. More on dyeing with cochineal here…
 



Cochineal History


Cochineal dye is a traditional natural dye for colouring textiles in Central and South America and has been used for beautiful, lightfast and permanent scarlets, pinks and reds for centuries. Cochineal was so important that Moctezuma levied an annual tribute of cochineal dye in the 15th century and cochineal was Mexico’s second most valuable export after silver.

Cochineal was introduced into Europe by the Spanish in the 1500s and very rapidly became the dye of choice for expensive but desirable scarlet and red clothes for kings and nobles, supplanting the European dye products then in use. Cochineal was replaced by synthetic dyes during the 1800s but is now seeing a pronounced resurgence of interest, with the increased use of non-synthetic, natural dyes. More on cochineal history here…
 



Cochineal Biology

When cochineal dye was introduced into Europe, scientists argued for many years as to whether cochineal was a plant, an animal or a mineral. We now know that cochineal is a female scale insect that lives on prickly pear cactus plants. Cochineal production is highly labour intensive and involves hand collection from the cactus leaves and careful management to reduce natural enemies that reduce scale insect populations and cochineal yields.

Peru is the principal producer of cochineal with only small quantities being produced in a number of other countries. More on cochineal biology here…
 



 

What’s new

 

2013

30 Mar

Cochineal prices maintained from Aug 2011

 

2011

27 Aug

Save 15% on new whole Cochineal Dye prices

21 July

Facebook Like button added - head of page

 

2010

04 Dec

Buy a Cochineal Dye Kit as a Christmas present!

23 Jan

Buy a Cochineal Dye Kit - everything you need to start dyeing

 

 

 

2009

08 May

We now sell Cochineal Dye Extract here - from 10 grams to 1 kg

21 Apr

What is Cochineal and more on Cochineal Insects

12 Apr

Cochineal Dye for sale - from 10 grams to 2 kg

12 Apr

Cochineal moved from Wild Colours website

 

 

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Last updated on 13 June 2013
Website and photos by Mike Roberts         © 2009-13  CochinealDye.com