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Did you know that mud-resist block printing by hand is used to create block printed patterns on fabric?

The town of Bagru Northwest India is world-renowned in the mud-resist technique of block-printing and dyeing, where mud and carved wooden blocks are used to create patterns on fabric.

It is a laborious, multi-step process.

At a high level:

  1. A paste of the mud and other materials is made to use as a resist.

  2. An intricately carved wooden block is dipped in the paste and stamped onto the fabric. Sawdust helps to bind the resist to the fabric.

  3. The fabric is washed and treated with a mordant before the resist is applied and then dyed, washed again, and hung out to dry.

  4. The process of applying the resist, dyeing, washing and drying is repeated depending on the desired design.

See the video and images below (credit: House of Wandering Silk).

The Mud-Resist Dyeing Process

A Carved Wooden Block

The Mud Resist

Sawdust applied to bind the resist to the fabric

Dyeing the fabric

Drying the fabric after dyeing and washing (possibly multiple times to create a layered pattern)

Three generations of artisans worked together to create the collection!


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