Block printing – An insight into the wonderful work of Indian Artisans
Block printing is an ancient printing method, and although not unique to India, India is very much known for it. Bagru and Jaipur are most well known for block printing. Many families in Bagru are block printers, they will grow up to be block printers as the skill is passed down through the generations. Some artisans specialise in the wood carving of the block as this is a very intricate skill and takes time and precision. Other artisans will focus on printing with the blocks.
Dabu print (mud print)
In my first collection I have used mud print. Mud is used as a resist to the dye, creating a negative space print on the linen before it is dyed. What I love about mud print is the uneven lines it creates. This technique is unusual and is rarely found on textiles in the U.K
Embroidery & Stitching
Digital embroidery, is a great way to cover a larger section of fabric, and very detailed patterns can be achieved. Digital embroidery is produced from a computer aided design, then converted into stitch on a large machine. Jasmine and Jodhpur use digital embroidery. The combination of very traditional methods to dye the fabric with natural indigo and modern embroidery techniques pull together old and new to create something quite special.
Hand embroidery gives a very rich tactile look and the work of the maker is apparent. It provides another element of unique charm to finished textiles. I love the way it can add a pop of colour in small sections. Hand embroidery is done on a circular frame with the fabric held taught so that the artisan can embroider with a needle and thread, using many different stitch techniques. In my debut collection, Taraka and Dabu Stripe both incorporate hand embroidery.
My cushions are stitched at Jacob's Well, a World Fair Trade Organisation which has 21 year's experience in the ethical fashion and textile industry. They provide sustainable employment and personal development opportunities for vulnerable young people from low socio-economic backgrounds. http://www.jacobs-well.biz/about/