Primary colors of pigment, red blue and yellow, are needed to produce dyes. Mixing any pair of them in the dyeing caldron gives us secondary colors green, orange and purple.
Different types of plants and insects are used to produce natural dyes.The most important source of dye is madder.This plant is originally from Yazd and grows in vineyards near grape trees. In autumn when the wind blows its kernel separates from the shell. The kernel is milled and then used for dyeing in rug industry. The process of planting madder is difficult and takes 4 years.
madder is originally light red, but its roots have many different pigments that produce varied range of dyes including dark red, orange and purple. Sunlight emits yellow and even blue colors from red madder. Red dye comes from an insect called Cochineal. The insect lives on the branches of fig tree. It sucks the extract of the plant and produces carminic acid which is the source of red dye.
Yellow dye is derived from flower of Reseda planBlue dye is obtained from the indigo plant. The plant does not grow in Iran. It grows on the strand of Rhine River in Germany. Iran is an importer of this plant.The dark blue dye in handmade rugs also comes from indigo. When indigo and Reseda plant are mixed they produce green dye.Other plants such as grape leaves, pomegranate peel, oak apple and straw are also used to produce dyes that are needed in rug industry.