Block Printed

There are many types of block printing, often characterised by the area and heritage of the craftsperson.

Some block printing is the kind you might first imagine - a block is dipped in an ink, and used to stamp a pattern on the fabric. This is a pretty simple concept when using modern inks, but when working with natural dyes the chemistry and technique is entirely different and often confusingly complicated to the uninitiated. The little video here shows black being printed, which is not black ink but a combination of myrobalan dyed fabric meeting a fermented iron paste which chemically reacts to make black (you can see the black developing).

Other techniques, known as 'resist', do sort of the opposite of printing. Blocks print wax, mud or gum over the parts of the design they want to protect from colour - creating a barrier. Fabric is then dyed and the substance removed to reveal a resist print in the original fabric colour.

What's true in all cases is the use of a pattern block (or blocks), although this again sees a lot of variation depending on the artist. Some blocks are hand carved out of wood, while others are made by hammering nails into a board in the desired shape (this is more common for wax resist as the metal can create unwanted colour changes to natural dyes while printing).

Rambler Jacket - Bark Brown Rambler Jacket - Bark Brown
Rambler Jacket
Bark Brown
£575.00
Forager Tote - Star Scraps Patchwork Forager Tote - Star Scraps Patchwork
Forager Tote
Star Scraps Patchwork
£180.00
Lush Pants - Star Scraps Patchwork Lush Pants - Star Scraps Patchwork
Lush Pants
Star Scraps Patchwork
£700.00
Worf Jacket - Star Scraps Patchwork Worf Jacket - Star Scraps Patchwork
Worf Jacket
Star Scraps Patchwork
£875.00
Saturn Vest - Star Scraps Patchwork Saturn Vest - Star Scraps Patchwork
Saturn Vest
Star Scraps Patchwork
£495.00
Bridge Shorts - Angry Pollinators Bridge Shorts - Angry Pollinators
Bridge Shorts
Angry Pollinators
£250.00
Bridge Shorts - Checker Bootleg Block Bridge Shorts - Checker Bootleg Block
Bridge Shorts
Checker Bootleg Block
£250.00
Mon Dress - Checker Bootleg Block Mon Dress - Checker Bootleg Block
Mon Dress
Checker Bootleg Block
£545.00
Daisy Dress - Checker Bootleg Block Daisy Dress - Checker Bootleg Block
Daisy Dress
Checker Bootleg Block
£495.00
Grateful Tee SS - Checker Bootleg Block Grateful Tee SS - Checker Bootleg Block
Grateful Tee SS
Checker Bootleg Block
£135.00
Grateful Tee LS - Checker Bootleg Block Grateful Tee LS - Checker Bootleg Block
Grateful Tee LS
Checker Bootleg Block
£150.00
Shore Shirt - Angry Pollinators Shore Shirt - Angry Pollinators
Shore Shirt
Angry Pollinators
£280.00
Shore Shirt - Indigo Flower Portal Print Shore Shirt - Indigo Flower Portal Print
Shore Shirt
Indigo Flower Portal Print
£280.00
Shore Shirt - Bark Flower Portal Print Shore Shirt - Bark Flower Portal Print
Shore Shirt
Bark Flower Portal Print
£280.00
Greetings Shirt - Checker Bootleg Block Greetings Shirt - Checker Bootleg Block
Greetings Shirt
Checker Bootleg Block
£280.00
Greetings Shirt - Indigo Flower Double Portal Greetings Shirt - Indigo Flower Double Portal
Greetings Shirt
Indigo Flower Double Portal
£280.00
Greetings Shirt - Bark Flower Double Portal Greetings Shirt - Bark Flower Double Portal
Greetings Shirt
Bark Flower Double Portal
£280.00
Snack Shirt - Checker Bootleg Block Snack Shirt - Checker Bootleg Block
Snack Shirt
Checker Bootleg Block
£310.00
Polite Pullover - Bark Flower Portal Velvet Polite Pullover - Bark Flower Portal Velvet
Polite Pullover
Bark Flower Portal Velvet
£450.00
Short on Time Jacket - Bark Portal Double Date Short on Time Jacket - Bark Portal Double Date
Short on Time Jacket
Bark Portal Double Date
£385.00