The state of Rajasthan is world-famous for different traditional handicrafts, the most loved and practiced is hand block print. This type of printing is practiced at various places in Rajasthan and every place has its history, culture, and geographical influence on the craft. Resulting regional differences exist and every region has its own unique style.
Sanganer near Jaipur is the hub of hand block printing and it is very popular due to the location close to the city. Sanganer is currently the major hub for very detailed and fine hand block printing units. These factories have more than 5000 block printers and most of them also work as a school with students from India and also from the outside of India. You can visit anytime and buy many more handicrafts in Jaipur.
This art of hand block print is at least hundreds of years old practice in India. The earliest registered centers of hand block print were in Gujrat and Andhra Pradesh. In Rajasthan, the craft started growing in the 18th century during the reign of Sawai Jai Singh. It was started in Sanganer due to the close distance from the river which supplied an ample amount of water for artists to dye and wash their items.
The China, Rangrez, and Dhobis of hand block printing.
The hand block artists of India mainly belong to the Chippa community. Since they are working on this craft for centuries, the process is transferred from generation to generation. Each and every member of the Chippa community is indulged in the process of dying, washing, and fabric printing. There are many people who are engaged in making several other handicrafts for sale.
The careful overlaying of prints and colors.
Block print designs are printed in many unique shapes and sizes, which are the main tools of hand block printers and these block designs are made from wood or metal. The carver starts carving the designs on the piece of wood and then the block is made, it is soaked in oil for around 15 days to soften the rough grains. There are two types of block i.e. used, the outline block known as Rekha, and the filler block known as Datta. For more finely detailed prints, metal blocks are used.
The natural color palette of hand block print.
Instead of using chemical products, traditional hand block print artists always used natural colors. The natural colors are obtained from flowers, fruits, and vegetables and create a basic palette of indigo blue, red, green, and black. Apart from these color sources, artists also use mango tree bark, slaked lime, and vinegar.
The Process of hand block printing.
The handprint process includes the following steps: Washing, marking, printing, and drying. Firstly, the fabrics are treated with bleaching solution and water before putting it to boil and left to dry in sun. This helps in removing the starch and dust particles from the clothes. The hand block printing process begins with setting up the printers with preferred ink colors, dipping the block in the color, and neatly stamping the design on the cloth.
Workshops for Hand Block Print.
Jaipur is world-famous for its hand block design handicrafts, most of them are printed in the Sanganer area of Jaipur. People from across the world visit Sanganer for attending the workshop on Hand Block printing. It is a very fun learning activity, and everyone enjoys this experience in Rajasthan. You can buy a very good quality cotton hand block print available at every shop in Jaipur.
Although most of the hand block print crafts are made in Sanganer, fashion and art form lovers should visit and check out Dabu or mud print of Rajasthan. It is also an ancient traditional art and produces beautiful printed fabrics in earthy colors.
You can buy these beautiful handicrafts in Jaipur.