Hand Block Printing
Sanganer and Bagru Village
Wood Block Printing
All of our collections incorporate traditional wood block prints from the Jaipur area of Rajasthan in North India. Dye patterns, stamped directly onto the fabric with hand carved wood blocks are a centuries old tradition and heritage craft of India, and have been admired in the West since the Renaissance.
Designers discuss color and printing methods with the printing master and do an initial color check.
Mehera Shaw connects quality craftsmanship to market, artisans to style trends, tailors and designers to finished product and consumers to the human story of slow fashion. Mehera Shaw encompasses a holistic vision of exchange not only between East and West, but also among all participants in the modern value chain.
Carving the Blocks Designs are traced onto teak wood blocks and then carved by hand using age-old methods and simple hand tools. Designs range from traditional motifs which are inspired by flowers and plants to contemporary looks inspired by the West and by other cultures.
Sustainable Design Block carvers are self-employed and work in small family groups. Their craft is passed down from generation to generation.
Block carving take immense knowledge and skill to trace and tap out the intricate patterns, into the wood. Carvers create a separate block for each color of the print.
Preparing the wood
Initially the wood is covered with white paste to seal it. It is then sanded to create an even surface for carving. Next it is measured and marked in order to trace the design exactly.
Transferring the Design Drilling and Carving by Hand
Precision carving is done using simple tools, age-old techniques and years of experience.
Color Separation Each color in the design is carved on a separate block. Different blocks are also used for the outline, fill colors and background.
Vegetable Dyes In Bagru, India
Featured above are mud resist “dabu” Indigo prints which use a mud paste. The paste is stamped on the fabric, then dried with a mixture of sawdust in the sun, then dipped in an Indigo vat. The process can be repeated several times to create several shades of indigo within the same print. These dyes are 100% vegetable dyes and a centuries old tradition for which Bagru is famous.
Color Mixing In Sanganer, India
Featured below are the newer chemical dyes used in Sanganer. The master printer mixes them to get the desired color and then pours the mixture into a tray with a wire and mesh ‘sponge’ which acts as the stamp pad for the block. The tray is put on a trolley which the printer pushes along with him as he prints. Dyes used are lowimpact, AZO free dyes. All water used is treated and recycled.
Printing Process In Sanganer, India The fabric â€” cotton or silkâ€” is stretched and pinned down along 5-10 meter long tables. The tables are specially built for block printing and are padded with 24 layers of jute fabric to achieve even color distribution.
Each color of the design is printed separately. Matching each edge of the repeat in the design takes skill and patience. The small irregularities created by handwork cause the overlaps and gaps emblematic of block printing.
Print Design Traditional to Modern
Print Aesthetic Looks Emblematic of Block Prints The slight irregularities in block placement and color density between layers are emblematic of block prints and are considered a sign of authenticity and of their hand-made beauty.
Trends to Prints Textile Design
Excellence in Design â€˘
Mehera Shaw is internationally known for our textile print collections combining artisan printing techniques with trend driven, contemporary looks.
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The process, history and story of block printing in Jaipur, India.