The fabrics used in Indian traditional clothing culture are often hand-printed using different techniques, some of which are more complicated, while others are simpler. This material is dedicated to hand block printing, a labor-intensive process of applying a pattern to the fabric layer by layer. We’re sure, most of you think that these colorful patterns are simply made by a machine printing in just a few seconds, but it is a much more difficult process. Come on, we’ll show you!
Let’s look at the process of block printing fabric in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.
Before you can start block printing, you need wooden blocks with carved patterns that will become patterns on the fabric.
Preparing the blocks
Teak wood blocks are the first need for hand block printing. And an even surface is equally important.
After polishing the block, flat and even check is done with basic tools.
Fevicol (glue) and white chalk powder is applied on the flat surface to get the design impression.
Later, the impression is nailed on the block with master craftsmen skills. Hand and eye coordination is a must and is perfected after years of daily practice.
The next step is to carve the block according to the design. And a handle is attached for easy printing on the cloth.
Now, it’s time to start printing.
Hand block printing
The artisan lays 20 layers of jute and 4 layers of reused cotton cloth on an 18-feet-long table.
The first step of printing is called “reg”.
Many steps are followed to get the final design. Every color is applied separately.
Alignment and perfection is the key in placing the block.
Finishing the fabric
Once the printing is finished, the ready cloths are sent for washing and sun drying process.
The final stage is gained after lots of hard work, craftsmanship, and dedication. And, of course, only natural resources are used in the process.
All of these beautiful, hand-printed by the traditional technique fabrics are now ready to be sold and used to make clothes.