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Block Printing On Fabrics– An Enriching Art Of India

By Expert Author: Lakshmi

A century old traditional art, “Block printing”, is still creating sensations only because of its simplicity and purity.

India is well known for its innovative excellence of arts & crafts. Particularly, Indian Sarees are alluring attires of women as they adapt to the changing eras and times. Till date they are maintaining their enriching and endearing freshness.

One of the admirable and amazing arts used in sarees is Block Printing. These Block printed sarees are having huge following since ancient times.

So unquestionably, these traditional forms of sarees are always the dears of women.

Block printing is an age-old traditional technique which uses wooden blocks and dyes for printing designs. This pure handcraft is still in vogue because of its simplicity.

The stunning fact about Block printing is, it is the only method that transfers very detailed designs on fabrics.

The world’s first wooden block prints were identified in China. Under the influence of Buddhism i.e., before AD 220, Chinese adapted the first printing to paper. Then Japanese and Europeans started following the same techniques. Later, Indians started printing on clay tablets during 7th century. Finally, the art of making printings on clothes has been developed by India.

In India, Rajasthan is a main hub for Block printed products. Today, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh also concentrated to produce these kinds of fabrics.

This time taking process needs dedication, team work and especially, the skill.

The major tools of this technique are wooden blocks, fabrics and dyes. The fabrics such as pure silk, pure cotton, crepe, georgette, chiffon and super net are in use for block printing.

Printer uses wooden blocks for producing patterns on the fabric. For that they cut the designs into blocks of different size and shapes by using carvers. To create an intricate design, it takes 5 carvers up to 3 days. They use up to 30 wooden blocks to complete the whole design.

They make use of Jute layers as to provide resiliency to the printing surface. For that, they use pins to keep it tight in place. After that, Printers now starts printing on fabrics.

In this step, they can select three approaches i.e., discharge printing, direct block printing and textile printing. Mainly discharge or direct block printing processes are under usage. As to create beautiful patterns, each subsequent printer must place the blocks accurately.

Earlier, natural and vegetable dyes are under usage, but today, synthetic and chemical dyes are gaining much popularity as they are easy to use and comparative. Intricate patterns and motifs like butties, stone works, kundans, flowers, fruits, animals, peacocks, birds, trees, geometrical designs and figurative patterns are covering the saree.

Alluring Block printed cotton sarees are awesome summer and casual wears. Festival and functional wear Block printed silk sarees with trendy prints are apt for today’s modern ladies. Designer block printed sarees with intricate works are best suitable for corporate, college and working places.

We know, “team work or unity is the strength which leads to better and smart results”. Undoubtedly, it will be proved when we observe this rocking art.

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