What is block printing?

Block Printing is a traditional art form of printing onto paper, fabric  and many other materials. The form of printing originated in India many years ago using vegetable dyes and natural colours. 

Jaipur (The Pink city of India) and capital of Rajasthan was founded by Jai Singh II and is one of the oldest cities of modern India.

Jaipur, besides its beauty is also famous for Block Printing Art. Block printing is also known in other forms as Hand Block Printing, Woodblock printing and woodcut printing. 

A brief history of Block Printing 

Block Printing has been practised in Rajasthan, India for more than 500 years. The art of Block Printing dates back to the  12th century. The technique of printing on fabrics was popular with Kings and Queens,  which catapulted the art form and made block printing  recognisable as a royal patronage from that time. 

Where did block printing originate though? Block printing on fabrics was introduced by the Chippa Community, located in the Bagru district of Rajasthan.

The art of block printing, similarly to many other art form including Kantha stitch is passed down through the generation. In block printings case this was by introducing printing forms such as Kalamkari block printing, Ajrakh printing and Dabu printing.

Sanganer and Bagru in Rajasthan are the major hubs of Block printing in India.  Jaipur has a huge unorganized textile market including Block Print Quilts, gowns, tote bags, Scarfs, pyjama sets and throws.

Block print design 

The traditional block print designs include designs of small flowers, various bootis, motifs, Mughal designs like floral designs, elephants, tiger, and animals of all sorts.  

Block Printing Designs pyjama sets: 

Indian pajamas mostly feature a range of  block prints. The block prints bring so much character to an other wise plain set. Hand block print on fabric generally add the most character. 

Block Printing Designs on Saris: 

Like our vintage sari scarves, block prints on saris are also a very prominent in Indian culture. They give a lot of personality to these pieces of clothing. Many floral in design and their colours tell a story in themselves. 

Block Printing Designs on Accessories: 

Block printing design ideas are not just limited to just suits and sarees. These stunning designs are also foraying into accessories like bedsheets, tote bags, baby blankets, quilts, dressing gowns, and a million of other things that we use in everyday life. 

The future of block printing

We all need to celebrate and promote block printing as a craft. After all, it is the oldest printing technique that has stood the test of time. Presently, what we need is more awareness and promotion for handmade and environment friendly products. The artisans need our support. For now, we can start by spreading the word and purchasing local handicrafts directly from them for this historic industry to survive and flourish.

Zins block print items

We have a range of original block print collections. From our one of a kind vintage sari block print scarves, baby blankets and totes bags to our block print kimono designs. 

Our vintage sari scarves are all double sided, combining two block printed saris, bound together by the traditional Kantha stitch. The super handy tote bags are again made from recycled block printed saris. Our unique baby blankets are something a loved one will cherish for ever.

This spring we launched a range of 6 kimono style block print dressing gowns. Ranging from a vibrant pink, featuring fun zebra and parrots to beautiful dark grey, black gown with with the block print design of a monkey in the jungle. We even have a Frida Kahlo inspired gown. 

To check Sari Scarves, Baby Blankets, Tote Bags and Kimiono designs on ZINS


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