Dabu Printing

Dabu Printing

Dabu Printing

Dabu printing or Mud printing is a traditional hand-block printing technique from Rajasthan, India. The word "Dabu" comes from the Hindi word "Dabana" which means "to press". 

 In this technique, artisans make a mud-resist material called "Dabu" using a mixture of desert sands. They then dip different shaped and sized mud-resistant blocks in natural dyes. The result is a mud-colored block print on fabric. 

Dabu printing is a labor-intensive process that requires several printing and dyeing steps. It was nearly wiped out in the last century. 

However, it is now famous worldwide for its vibrant and unique designs and colors. 

 Dabu prints are often used to adorn traditional ethnic wear, but they can also be used to decorate home décor products. 

Dabu printing is practiced in the village of Akola, in the Chittorgarh district of Rajasthan. It is grouped with other traditional Rajasthani handicrafts like Sanganeri and Bagru. 

Dabu printing is a labor-intensive process that involves: 

  1. Washing the fabric to remove impurities that may interfere with the dyeing process.
  2. Hand-carving wooden blocks with intricate designs.
  3. Preparing a mud resist mixture with gum, lime, and white chaff.
  4. Dipping the blocks in natural dyes and hand printing the designs on the fabric.
  5. Using a paste made of mud, lime gum, wheat powder, and water.
  6. Dipping the wooden block into the paste and pressing it onto the fabric.
  7. Sprinkling sawdust on top of the fabric to avoid smudging the pattern.
  8. Dyeing the fabric in indigo or other natural dyes.
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