Magic of Ajrakh Block Printing

Ajrakh printing is a block printed textile that resist dye using natural dyes . It is basically a block printing technique that is done on cloth.

In ajrakh printing there are different types of natural dyes are used like indigo  and madder . 

 Ajrakh is totally organic resist is made by tree’s root and leave of tree etc. 

This art involves arabic style geometric designs. 

It is the synergy bond between  handloom textile and vegetable dyes that creates magic .There are no use of chemicals in manufacturing ajrakh print. 

Ajrakh printing using natural dyes is one of the oldest techniques of printing in India and it is one of the must complex and  sophisticated method of printing . 

Technique  of Ajrakh Print:

First step involes the cleaning of Ajrakh fabric .

After washing process, the cloth is soaked in a special solution made of sodium bicarbonate oil. This soaking process can take a couple of days .

Wooden hand blocks are used for doing the ajrakh painting. 

The cloth is then washed using the Myrobalan .It is the powdered nut of the harde tree. 

The cloth is then sun dried.

The excess myrobalan that is present on the cloth after drying is brushed off. 

The design motifs on ajrakh fabric are outlined by bamboo tree resins using the wooden blocks. 

The traditional colours found in ajrakh printing are deep in color, which symbolises nature.   

Crimson red defines the earth, and indigo blue defines twilight. 

Black and white color are used to outline motifs and defines  the symmetrical designs. 

Indigo is obtained from the indigo plant.

Red color is obtained from alizarin  that is found in the roots of madder plants. 

Black color is obtained from iron shavings, millet flour and molasses including ground tamarind seeds .

 The  ajrakh prints have  vibrant color contrasts like rust, yellow and orange.

 The ajrakh is made by khatri community in Kutch Gujarat .

 The dyeing and printing process together takes 14 to 21 days to complete that makes the ajrakh fabric look awesome  and skin friendly .

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