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Re: [BKARTS] bleached linen?

On Feb 16, 2005, at 8:55 AM, Amy West wrote:

The bleaching process weakening the fibers is an excellent point that
I hadn't thought of.

When I was doing some research on linen, I also learned that today's
linen is retted with Oxalic Acid rather than dew or water. Has that
acid been neutralized? --- I don't know.
I might also add that some of the linen that appears to be "natural" in
color was possibly dyed because most of the fiber is bleached while
being processed.
At the same time, I might also remind everyone, that some/most of the
linen thread that we use for sewing is also bleached ---- we have a
letter directly from Barbours, the primary supplier of linen thread,
that states that.
So, even though flax is a very strong fiber as a thread or fabric under
tension, it is not the best for folding because of the rigid nature of
the fiber. And, when the manufacturer treats it with, in our
opinion/experience, harsh chemicals, it seems to me that it may not be
the best fiber for our purposes.
Bill Minter

William Minter Bookbinding & Conservation, Inc.
4364 Woodbury Pike
Woodbury, PA  16695
Fax:   814-793-4045
Email:    wminter@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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