Trend of printed cloth had never been off fashion people not only prefer them but also these cloth have great demand. Ever thought how they are printed and what is the process behind it ? Though they are done in various ways but the one among them to be describe is Hand block printing. It is a form of dying and coloring the fabric using wooden blocks or metal blocks. Sometimes, linoleum blocks is also used. These blocks are carved with beautiful designs and are dipped in colour after that gently applied on fabrics, which is left to be dried for few days. Ajarkh and Bandhani are few of the examples of hand block printing which are quite popular in gujarat.
Origin of Hand block printing
Hand block printing is being practicing from very ancient times from nearly 12th century in western and southern parts of India but the roots of it began to grow from 17 th century and flourished in Gujarat mainly by Pathiapur families. Althoug the art is popular in many states but Gujarat and Rajasthan are popular for it.
Here, are few technique of hand block printing :-
A. Direct printing :- In this process cotton and silk cloth is first bleached and then fabric is dyed unless light background is desired after that fabric is printed with blocks.
B. Resist printing :- In this process area which is to protected from dye is covered with the mixture of clay and resin. The dyed fabric is then washed. Then dyes are spread in protected area through rippled effect. Block prints are then used for further designs.
C. Discharge printing :- In this process fabric is dyed, then chemical is used to remove the dye from the portion that is to be designed in a different colors.
Once the printing done and fabrics are dried then after giving final touch these are packed to reach in market. Beautiful bedsheets, handlooms, curtains, sarees printed in various designs seems to seduce people eyes.
Due to high demand they are also exported to various states gujarati Bandhani is famous allover for it’s beautiful designs printed.
Blocks used in printing are carved with beautiful pictures of camel, women, flowers , leaves which depict the culture and tradition too.
Hand block printing is not only an art but a treasure for the printing men who dedicate their compassion on it.