Batik is considered a traditional Indonesian fabric art that makes use of the wax-resist method to print and dye fabric. However, in India, this fabric art is flourishing as it has become part of mainstream fashion, with high-end designers, like Madhu Jain, Rajdeep Ranawat, and Anupama Dayal, creating batik haute couture for the catwalk.
The Batik Technique
In Batik printing, sections of plain fabric are covered in wax and then the entire fabric is dyed. After dyeing, the fabric is boiled in water to get rid of the wax. The specialty of Batik printing is that it uses natural and organic dyes, and this allows the artisans to get a kaleidoscope of colors that are a sight to behold.
One of the distinctive features of Batik is the seepage of dyes into the sections covered with wax. This occurs when the fabric is crumpled to immerse into the dye. The crumpling causes the wax to crack and dye seeps into these minute crevices, coloring the underlying fabric.
Before the artisan applies wax on the fabric, the cloth has to be prepped. This preparation is done by starching the cloth and stenciling the design on it. This allows the artisan to decide which parts need to be covered with wax. Usually, the wax is a combination of paraffin and beeswax.
Even wax application on the fabric is an art form, as the artisan has to ensure that it does not become too hot to burn the fabric, and at the same time, the wax should be pliable to spread on the fabric. While there are many methods of applying wax (yes, there are multiple techniques for wax application as well), in India, artisans use hand painting or wax splashing method to cover the fabric with wax.
Batik is a labor-intensive process. Nonetheless, the artisan uses their creativity to come up with spectacular designs that will leave you spellbound. Each Batik fabric is unique, drawing inspiration from nature, religion and spiritual beliefs. The motifs are visually appealing and transcend cultures.
Batik: Making Fashion Come to Life
Thanks to celebrities, like Kareena Kapoor-Khan, Priyanka Chopra, and Kangana Raunat, Batik has become the go-to print for casual and formal wear. It is stylish, elegant and chic. Its brilliant colors and patterns make you feel confident.
Today,Batik print salwar suits have made a resurgence. They are considered in-vogue and are trending constantly for their hypnotizing appearance and mesmerizing patterns. When you don such a salwar suit, you will feel you are ready to conquer the world. Not only does it make you feel good about yourself, but the suit can flatter your skin tone and body shape, depending on the color, design and cut you choose.
Batik print suits have opened a whole new dimension in the world of Indian fashion. The haute couture is promoting Batik like never before and this has played a major role in the fabulous and gorgeous designs becoming part of mainstream fashion.
Batik is no longer the staple of sarongs and dupattas. Instead, this unique art form has broken shackles from its rustic past and made urban women into style icons. The hand-painted Batik that is reminiscent of Madhubani art, Kutch Batik, Madhya Pradesh Batik, and others create exquisite motifs and intricate designs. Some represent basic geometric shapes and lines while others come with abstract designs. However, most Batik designs bring forth the beauty of nature and also focus on religious motifs, and mythical creatures.
Empowering Yourself with Batik
When you wear a Batik salwar suit, you will feel omnipotent. The sheer grace and style of the designs and patterns on the fabric instill you will hope, confidence, and panache. You will feel you are there to conquer every obstacle that modern life throws at you. That is the power that Batik exudes. Now, take this potent strength and combine it with age-old heritage and chic elegance, you have a prêt-à-porter outfit to wear to office, festivities, parties or a wild night out with your very own girl gang.
There is no doubt that Batik is in and fashion will never stay the same. It has transformed couture and made it more vibrant, like a celebration of colors and designs. It speaks a language that is about finesse, poise, and subtlety. What is your Batik salwar suit saying to you?