Celebrating Handblock Printing

Thursday, 2nd February 2017 | Written By Prerna
EAST’s history with handblock printing goes back to when the company was first formed in the mid-90s. A love for all things handcrafted in Jaipur and the villages of Rajasthan lead to a long-term collaboration with communities and artisans (each village specialises in producing certain prints) to produce the prints and styles that EAST is known for today.

Penny Oliver, one of EAST’s founders, travels to India frequently and is still humbled by the process, “it’s such an awe-inspiring technique; handblock printing is a skill that’s passed down through the generations and a simple design on six meters of fabric can be stamped over 1,000 times.” Each colour pattern is stamped repeatedly across the fabric, one colour at a time, making each piece completely unique.

This labour intensive technique requires years of experience, keen eyes, and patience to perfect the skill. While the process hasn’t changed, improvements in technology means that today’s pieces have a more polished finish and last better. “Very few brands consistently stock handcrafted products at the level we do,” explains Penny. “We’ve built a really good relationship with the craftspeople in Rajasthan and what I especially admire is the way they look after each other - it’s a wonderful experience to see three or four generations of Artisans working together to create such beautiful work.”

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