Hand block prints are one of the simplest ways of fabric printing. Despite being originated from other countries, India has become a centre of such prints. Talking about Indian hand block prints, it is undoubtedly the state of Gujarat that tops the chart in hand block prints. Like Gujarat, there are other destinations of India where block prints are found, but Gujarat definitely leads the team.
It is said that Gujarat, Rajasthan and Sindh area were the centre point from where the hand block print is originated. The tribes and different communities of these three areas used to use wooden blocks to print different types of fabrics in ancient times. Of course different tribes and communities have different styles and patterns of work. Later on this hand block prints had started trading off out of the country and to other parts of the nation.
About the work
Hand block print is an old way of printing fabrics. It is slow but simple way of printing. Artisans make the different designing wooden blocks and then dye the fabrics with them to make an exquisite range of designs. There are three main processes of hand block prints in Gujarat that can be found. These are
• Resist print: in this process lime or wax is used in dying process.
• Direct Print: It is a direct process. Here the dye, with the blocks, is applied directly on the cloth.
• Discharge Print: here in this process, blocks are applied directly and a special type of material is used to open up the dyed area.
Types of designs
As mentioned that the different communities have their different styles and pattern of block prints. Bhuj and Ahmadabad are two most desirable travel locations in Gujarat that has diverse collection of hand block printed fabrics.
• Ajarakh is resist types of prints, famous in Dhamadka, Kutch.
• Matani-Pacchedi, another pattern by Devi pujak community
• Vegetable prints are well known from Ahmadabad and Dessa.
• Saudagiri is famous from Ahmadabad
• Batik, another well known print form Mundra village, Bhujpur in Kutch.
People, Products, Popularity
The inhabitants of several villages in Ahmedabad, Dessa and Kutch are associated with this hand block print work. They use different fabrics like silk, cotton and linen. Salwar suits, Saree, Kurtas, wall hangings, home decors, bags, skirts, jackets, dupattas and much more products are immensely popular there.