Block Printing

Hand carved wood blocks

Have you ever wondered how much work goes in to our block print skirts?

Well in February I was lucky enough to visit the Anokhi Museum of Hand Printing in Jaipur, India with Angela Noble of Tribe Zuza.

The museum is set in a beautiful restored haveli close to the Amber Fort and displays the most exquisite block print textiles.

I hadn't realised just how many processes the cloth can be put through. Using natural and chemical dyes and processes, mud-resist techniques or embellishing with gold and silver so many different effects can be achieved.

Needless to say any block printed fabric will have taken many hours of labour. It's not just the printing process where each colour is printed separately with a series of different blocks which are dipped into the dye and then carefully aligned and pressed on to the cloth, but even before that can start there is the making of the blocks themselves.

The pattern has to be designed and then transferred to a piece of wood where it is skillfully and meticulously carved or the blocks can be made of brass with each tiny piece of metal twisted to the desired shape or even hundreds of pins which create tiny printed dots.

So next time you wear your block print skirt send a few thoughts of thanks to the wonderfully skilled artisans who created it

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Kalash Tribal

 Kalash Tribal are a FatChanceStyle belly dance performance troupe based in Devon, UK

directed by Kelley Beeston, a FatChanceBellyDance® advanced instructor teaching classes and workshops in the UK and abroad

© 2020 by Kalash Tribal 

FatChanceBellyDance® FCBD® ATS® and American Tribal Style® are federally registered trademarks of FatChanceBellyDance Inc