The scarves are finally here. Three brand new, hand printed, 100% cotton, natural dyed scarves, block printed with my designs.
This is a project I was working on the whole time we were in India: I spent a long time searching for a block printer to work with and finally, in Kutch, we visited a printer who ended up becoming a good friend. He works exclusively with natural dyes, and who I knew could do good things with my designs.
The three designs were printed by hand using the ajrakh method, where the design is printed with a resist paste rather than a colored ink. This creates a darker background with a lighter design where the dye resisted the image.
The three natural dyes I worked with were madder (red), indigo (blue), and logwood (purple). The block printing studio is surrounded by huge vats and cauldrons of dye that have been fermenting for years (or decades in the case of the indigo) to give just the right color.
The block printing is done on long, padded tables, and each textile can take anywhere from several minutes to several weeks to print, depending on the complexity of the design and the number of colors used.
The fabric goes through several rinses to get all the dyes out, and is then laid in the sun to dry:
Then packed, shipped and sent to me in the US. I've been keeping this project under wraps since I started working on it, but it feels so good to wear something I designed myself (I'm wearing the logwood scarf as I type). I'm beyond thrilled with how they came out. You can find them in the shop right here.