Samarkand is famous with a small workshop where silk paper is produced and a carpet factory that will be visited by us today.
Silk paper had been used before cheaper paper made of cellulose was discovered. Even today silk paper is produced manually that is why it is more expensive.
Carpets are also made following manual production technique. The cheapest ones cost several thousand dollars.
Let us start with paper. First a layer of bark is removed from a mulberry. The upper dark layer is also cut off.
The bark is then boiled in special cans to make it soft.
Soft bark is turned into pasty mixture.
The mechanism is set into motion with the help of the device that functions under the influence of a water stream. A half of the wheel is put into water. Water makes rubbing surfaces smooth.
The pasty mixture is first dissolved in a large can with water. The water is then sifted through a screen.
A thin layer of the future paper is left on the surface of the screen.
The screen is freed from the mixture.
It is turned into a smooth layer and is put under a press for several days.
This piece of paper is very rough.
It needs polishing.
The paper is used for book printing. Its service life is said to be equal to 200 years.
Let us go to the carpet factory.
The left plate has silk warm cocoons in it. Warms produce woolen threads around themselves but they will never get a chance to become a butterfly as the cocoons will be boiled soon. Warms will die and it will be easy for people to work with the threads. Other plates contain natural colorants such as leaves, roots, etc.
One warm produces a thread which is hundreds meters long. They are then turned into strong ropes.
This is where the ropes are colored.
The people work on Saturdays as well.
They can use your drawings or even photos while making a carpet.
The more complicated the pattern of the carpet is, the more expensive is the carpet itself. The blue one costs 7000 US dollars.
This carpet is even more complicated and is being made specially for a Japanese carpet enthusiast.