Hand block printing is a centuries old art form popular in India, China, and many other East Asian countries. It is a sort of hereditary art which has been transferred from generation to generation.
Block printing means art which is done by using wooden blocks for printing. Blocks also Known as “bunta” and are made up of wood. Beautiful designs are crafted from these blocks and are used for creating impressions on the fabric. The artisans take proper care of the wooden block to ensure that it leaves a proper print on the fabric. Whether there are large or small motifs the artisans crafts the wood to beautiful designs on this wooden block. The fabric is stretched over the printing table and secured with pins. Colour is mixed separately and kept ready. So are the blocks. They are soaked in oil for 10-15 days to soften the wood.
The colour is kept in a tray which rests on another tray that contains a liquid made of glue and pigment binder. This gives the colour a soft base and permits even spreading of colour on the block.
When printing begins, the colour is first evened out in the tray. Then the block is dipped in the outline colour.
The block is pressed down hard on the fabric, to make a clear impression. Thereafter, other blocks are used to fill in colour. wooden block is caught properly while pressing it on the fabric. There is a handle present on it which ensures that the print will be implied with the proper force. It consists of holes which will enable to proper air follow which is necessary while printing.
Once the fabric is printed, it is dried in the sun & then rolled in newspaper to prevent the fabric layers from sticking to each other later it is steamed and it is washed in water and dried in the sun follow with Ironing of the hand crafted piece.