Textile Design Techniques


The textile design traditions shared by artisans worldwide narrow down to four techniques: weaving, printing, tie-dye and batik. These techniques are interpreted differently by each culture by way of color palette, symbolism, traditional patterns even modern interpretations. Below are basic insights into the intricacy of these techniques to gain an appreciation for the artistry, time and dedication that goes into making our fabrics. To say they're special is an understatement. Check out the videos to see Sakiori weaving and Indonesian batik in the making.

BATIK

 

A technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to whole cloth, or cloth made using this technique. Batik is made either by drawing dots and lines of the resist with a spouted tool called a canting or by printing the resist with a copper stamp called a cap. The applied wax resists dyes and therefore allows the artisan to color selectively by soaking the cloth in one color, removing the wax with boiling water, and repeating if multiple colors are desired.

 A tradition of making batik is found in various countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Nigeria; the batik of Indonesia, however, is the best-known. Indonesian batik made in the island of Java has a long history of acculturation, with diverse patterns influenced by a variety of cultures, and is the most developed in terms of pattern, technique, and the quality of workmanship. On October 2009, UNESCO designated Indonesian batik as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of

PRINTING

This process is the earliest, simplest and slowest of all printing methods. A design is drawn on, or transferred to, prepared wooden blocks. A separate block is required for each distinct colour in the design. A blockcutter carves out the wood around the heavier masses first, leaving the finer and more delicate work until the last so as to avoid any risk of injuring it when the coarser parts are cut. When finished, the block has the appearance of a flat relief carving, with the design standing out. Fine details, difficult to cut in wood, are built up in strips of brass or copper. This method is known as coppering.

The printer applies color to the block and presses it firmly and steadily on the cloth, striking it smartly on the back with a wooden mallet. Each succeeding impression is made in precisely the same manner until the length of cloth is fully printed. The cloth is then wound over drying rollers. If the pattern contains several colors the cloth is first printed throughout with one color, dried, and then printed with the next.

Block printing by hand is a slow process. It is, however, capable of yielding highly artistic results, some of which are unobtainable by any other method.

TIE-DYE

Tie-dye is a modern term invented in the mid-1960s in the United States for a set of ancient resist-dyeing techniques, and for the products of these processes. The process of tie-dye typically consists of folding, twisting, pleating, or crumpling fabric or a garment and binding with string or rubber bands, followed by application of dye(s). The manipulations of the fabric prior to application of dye are called resists, as they partially or completely prevent the applied dye from coloring the fabric. More sophisticated tie-dyes involve additional steps, including an initial application of dye prior to the resist, multiple sequential dye and resist steps, and the use of other types of resists (stitching, stencils) and discharge.

WEAVING

Weaving is a method of textile production in which two distinct sets of yarns or threads are interlaced at right angles to form a fabric or cloth. Similar methods are knitting, felting, and braiding or plaiting. The method in which these threads are inter woven affects the characteristics of the cloth.

Cloth is usually woven on a loom, a device that holds the warp threads in place while filling threads are woven through them. The way the threads interlace with each other is called the weave. The majority of woven products are created with one of three basic weaves: plain weave, satin weave, or twill. Woven cloth can be plain or woven in decorative or artistic design.

 


 

 

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