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Hand Block Printing : An Ancient Art Revived

Updated: Aug 21, 2021

Started by Chhipa Community the art of hand block printing died when machine made printing with chemical colors made printing very fast and easily available to everyone. However soon the negative effects of chemical based printing and side effects on environments were visible and the traditional art cultivated again.

Chhippa having its root in Gujarati word "Chappa" is literally "to stamp or to print" and it is used for the community involved in the Ancient art of traditional hand block printing since start. Traditional all the Community members settled in the two neighboring towns of Jaipur city namely Bagru and Sanganer.

Image: Town of Bagru, 32 Km from the city of Jaipur, Rajasthan

What is Hand Block Printing

While the name suggest so clearly that it is printing on fabric by hand made blocks, the actual process is bit longer and involves multiple steps and days. Infact there are various arts of hand block printing which are famous in different cities. These are Dabu hand block printing, Rapid Sanganeri Hand block printing, Bagru direct hand block printing, Ajrakh, Bagh, Batik and various more block printing across cities of India.

It is estimated that this art cultivated ~450 years back when Chhippa community moved from Alwar (under the Sawai Madhopur Kingdom). Today also the area near Sanjaria river is called "Chhipa Mohalla" meaning printer's colony. Even the town Sanganer might be driving its name from the Sanjaria river, when Chhippa community moved to Sanganer. The clay from river provided important ingredient "Mud" for Dabu printing and water helped for all other processes.

Complete process of block printing include various steps

i) preparation of raw fabric

ii) making colors and dyes.

iii) Different types of block printing steps - Dabu, Bagru, Sanganeri

iv) intrinsic Technic for Indigo or Dabu printing

v) drying and finishing

here is a glimpse: Image : Block press print

Visit our website or Amazon Store - for Sanganeri or Bagru hand block items.

Stay tuned for complete update on block printing process.

#handblockprinting #jaipurdohar #blockprinted

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