The essential feature in the ink for use with a shading pen is simply the addition of a sufficient quantity of acacia or other mucilaginous substance to impart a proper degree of consistency to the ink. A mixture of 2 parts of mucilage of acacia with 8 of ink gives about the required consistency. The following formulas will probably be found useful:


Water-soluble nigrosin .............. 1 part

Water............. 9 parts

Mucilage acacia.... 1 part


Paris violet........ 2 parts

Water............. 6 parts

Mucilage acacia.... 2 parts


Methyl violet....... 1 part

Distilled water..... 7 parts

Mucilage acacia.... 2 parts


Bordeaux red......     3 parts

Alcohol...........     2 parts

Water.............   20 parts

Mucilage acacia....     2 parts


Rosaniline acetate .. 2 parts

Alcohol........... 1 part

Water.............   10 parts

Mucilage acacia.... 2 parts

Silver Ink


Triturate in a mortar equal parts of silver foil and sulphate of potassa, until reduced to a fine powder; then wash the salt out, and mix the residue with a mucilage of equal parts of gum arabic water.


Make as gold ink, but use silver leaf or silver bronze powder.


Oxide of zinc...... 30 grains

Mucilage......... 1 ounce

Spirit of wine...... 40 drops

Silver bronze...... 3 drachms

Rub together, until perfectly smooth,

the zinc and mucilage, then add the spirit of wine and silver bronze and make up the quantity to 2 ounces with water.

Violet Ink


For 2 gallons, heat 2 gills of alcohol on a water bath. Add to the alcohol 2 ounces of violet aniline, and stir till dissolved; then add the mixture to 2 gallons of boiling water; mix well, and it is ready for use. Smaller quantities in proportion.


Another good violet ink is made by dissolving some violet aniline in water to which some alcohol has been added. It takes very little aniline to make a large quantity of the ink.

White Ink (for other White Inks see Blueprint Inks)

So-called white inks are, properly speaking, white paints, as a white solution cannot be made. A paint suitable for use as an "ink" may be made by grinding zinc oxide very fine on a slab with a little tragacanth mucilage, and then thinning to the required consistency to flow from the pen. The mixture requires shaking or stirring from time to time to keep the pigment from separating. The "ink" may be preserved by adding a little oil of cloves or other antiseptic to prevent decomposition of the mucilage.

White marks may sometimes be made on colored papers by the application of acids or alkalies. The result, of course, depends on the nature of the coloring matter in each instance, and any "ink" of this kind would be efficacious or otherwise, according to the coloring present in the paper.

Yellow Ink


Gamboge (in coarse powder), 1 ounce; hot water, 5 ounces. Dissolve, and when cold, add of spirit, 3/4 ounce.


Boil French berries, 1/2 pound, and alum, 1 ounce, in rain water, 1 quart, for A an hour, or longer, then strain and dissolve in the hot liquor gum arabic, 1 ounce.