Cotton is the down surrounding the seeds in pods of certain shrubs and
trees growing in tropical and semi-tropical countries. First
introduced into Europe by the Saracens, it was manufactured into cloth
in Spain in the early 13th century. Cotton cloth was first made in
England in the early 17th century.
The colour of cotton varies from deep yellow to white. The fibre
differs in length, the long stapled being the most valued. It is
difficult to dye and requires a special preparation.
A few of the natural dye stuffs are capable of dyeing cotton direct,
without a mordant, such as Turmeric, Barberry bark, safflower,
annatto. For other dyes cotton has a special attraction, such as