Fashion vocab

A Masterclass In The History Of Batik Print

I wore a Batik printed kurta some days back and was complimented by some people who said “it’s an interesting print”. “Interesting” and no one could name the print. That’s when I realized, we don’t talk about these age-old prints enough. Many of us are already deprived of print knowledge and it’s not long before these art forms cease to exist. In lieu of that, let’s talk about Batik and look at its very origin and other characteristics.

Batik generally refers to print technique. In this technique wax resist dying is applied to the whole cloth or to a particular section of the cloth. Lines and dogs are made on the cloth either by a sprouted tool called canting or by printing the resist using a copper stamp known as cap. This applied wax resist dyes and helps the artisan in applying selective color by soaking the clothes in dyes. The applied wax is then removed with boiling water.
With this, let’s look at the etymology, history, and process of Batik print.

Read more- Trending Fashion Terms Of 2022 Every Fashionista Should Know

1. Etymology

Batik print
“Batik” has a Javanese origin. The origin of the word is traced back to the Javanese word “amba” (to write) and “titik” (dot). The term found its foothold in English in the encyclopedia Britannica back in 1880. There are various types of Batik print such as Javanese Batik, Coastal Batik, Sundanese Batik, Sumatran Batik, and Balinese Batik.

2. History in India

Batik print
The origin of Batik print in India goes back to the 1st century AD to the Khatri community of Gujarat. This technique of printing was initially practiced in China during the Sui dynasty. When the art form was introduced in India it was mainly practiced by the Khatri community of Gujarat which was the only artisan community associated with the technique. Later, it was propagated to various other states and now Batik print can be seen in Rajasthan, West Bengal, Andra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, and Gujarat.

3. Process

Batik print
The print technique involves 3 essential stages of print and those are waxing, dying, and dewaxing. The print is done by hiding a certain part of the clothes with wax. The fabric is first washed to remove starches and other sizing materials. Post this a wooden printing block is dipped in molten wax and applied to the washed fabric. The wax-coated fabric is then dipped in dyes and the areas without the wax coating soak the colors. The cloth is then dewaxed and dried.

One of the lesser known facts about the printing technique is when the cloth is coated in wax, it is done on a table that has sand on its surface in order to stop the wax bleed. The wax container is placed on a stove to maintain a proper temperature for the density of the wax.

4. Fabric used

Apart from the printing technique the artists also take into account the cloth. Materials such as cotton or silk are preferred for this print so that the fabric will absorb the wax for the successful completion of the dye-resisting process. High thread count is an imperative aspect of cloth in Batik printing for the desired results.

The motifs which are witnessed on Batik printed clothes are often taken from the artisans’ surroundings. From flora and fauna to other indigenous patterns, the cloth tells a tale of the locale.

Are you a proud owner of a Batik-printed kurta/saree? Not yet? I think it’s time you brag about your roots!

Picture courtesy- 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

(15) Comments

  1. I know this web page presents quality dependent posts and additional information, is there any
    other web site which offers these information in quality?

  2. Fantastic items from you, man. I’ve have in mind your
    stuff previous to and you’re just too magnificent.

    I really like what you’ve obtained right here, really like what you’re stating
    and the way during which you assert it. You make it entertaining and you still
    take care of to stay it wise. I cant wait to learn far more from you.
    This is actually a terrific site.

  3. This is a topic that’s near to my heart… Take care! Where are your contact details though?

  4. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on website.


  5. Right here is the right site for anyone who really wants to understand this topic.
    You understand so much its almost hard to argue with you (not that I really would want
    to…HaHa). You certainly put a new spin on a subject which has been written about for a long time.
    Wonderful stuff, just great!

  6. Hi! This is kind of off topic but I need some advice from an established blog.
    Is it difficult to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty quick.

    I’m thinking about making my own but I’m not sure where
    to begin. Do you have any ideas or suggestions? Cheers

  7. Your style is very unique compared to other people I’ve read stuff from.
    Many thanks for posting when you have the opportunity, Guess I
    will just book mark this web site.

  8. Hi it’s me, I am also visiting this site regularly, this web
    page is actually nice and the people are in fact sharing fastidious thoughts.

  9. I always spent my half an hour to read this website’s articles or reviews every day along with
    a cup of coffee.

  10. We stumbled over here different page and thought I may as well check things out.
    I like what I see so i am just following you. Look forward to looking into your web page
    yet again.

  11. It’s really very complicated in this full of
    activity life to listen news on TV, so I just use web
    for that purpose, and get the latest news.

  12. Incredible! This blog looks exactly like my old one!
    It’s on a completely different topic but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Great
    choice of colors!

  13. Very good blog! Do you have any recommendations for aspiring writers?
    I’m planning to start my own blog soon but I’m a little
    lost on everything. Would you recommend starting
    with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option?
    There are so many choices out there that I’m totally confused ..

    Any ideas? Appreciate it!

  14. Howdy! I simply want to offer you a big thumbs up for the great info you have
    got here on this post. I will be returning to your web site for
    more soon.

  15. Everything is very open with a clear clarification of the challenges.
    It was really informative. Your website is very useful. Many thanks for sharing!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *