Bagru print: A Hidden Treasure For Hand-block Print Art

by The Printroots


Rajasthan is always known for its rich culture and heritage. Travelers from all over the world enrich their trip destination by visiting its beauty. Jaipur is one of the most known places in Rajasthan, by the name “Pink city”. The historical essence is always present in the architecture here. Remembering the craft culture, Jaipur is blessed with a wide variety of hand-block printing in its native village areas. the centuries-old traditional art of hand block printing, exclusively known as Bagru hand block printing. This splendid art is crafted with the noteworthy efforts of artisans which is irresistible to opt for. With the unique texture and indigenous natural colors melange, it is worldwide popular among people for the years.

One of them is “Bagru” village. Bagru village is approximately 32 km away from Jaipur city and falls apart on the Jaipur-Ajmer road. The art of block-printing in Bagru has a prominent position in the printed textile industry in India- as their local artisans have kept it alive for more than 300 years through generations; which made the craft one of the most popular handicrafts globally. The use of eco-friendly dyes and natural dyes with their unique pattern is tried to keep authentic to date.

(Artisan Practiced Block Printing)


The Bagru print is a traditional hand block print technique practiced by the Chippa community of the Bagru township of Jaipur, Rajasthan. The livelihood of the majority is artisanship. Bagru says the story of two communities, Chhipa and Raiger, who were involved in block Bagru printing and manufacturing of leather respectively. The printing technique is known for its use of natural colors in black (Syahi), red (Begar), and brown shades. The unit is busy with local artisans laboring over yards and yards of fabric. The walls are stacked high with wooden block prints, some over 100 years old, with designs so intricate and varied that they’re hard to replicate. Traditionally only motifs inspired by nature were used for the Bagru printing but over time, the designs have evolved.


Washing Process.

The traditional and hand-tailored Bagru printing process begins with washing the texture in clean water, followed by applying ocean salt and castor oil. To remove the residue and more starch, the texture is washed for 2 to 3 days. However, traditionally, cow dung was used for this purpose, but nowadays, the cleaner has taken the place of cow compost. Finally, at the end of each cycle, the fabric is washed in flowing water. 'Hari Sarana' is the name of this cycle (scouring).

HARDA DYEING (‘Peela Karana’ Tannin):

The fabric is treated with a 'harda' solution once it has become thoroughly polluted. Natural mordants such as Harda and Alum are used in this procedure to capture the natural colors that we print on the fabric using our pattern blocks.

Harda is a natural substance derived from the Myrobalan fruit that has been utilized in Ayurvedic medicine for digestive relief. It gives the fabric a yellowish-cream tint, while the tannic acid in harda gives it a black color when combined with ferrous. This is referred to as 'Peela Karana' ( Tannin).

The fabric must be laid flat and dried in the sunlight after Harda dyeing. After this stage, the fabric will have a yellowish hue that will fade once washed.


(Artisan Practiced Fabric in Harda Dyeing Process )

Printing Process

The dry Harda fabric is then put out and tacked in preparation for printing. The fabric is printed with the syahi rekh (black outline) first, then the begar (red filling), and vice versa. The fabric is cleaned three days after the printing is completed. The dry fabric is then cooked with natural substances like Alizarin (extract from the root of the Madder Plant) and dawoodia flowers in a big copper vat. After that, there's another cycle of washing and drying. The fabric is washed and dried once the desired color is attained.

(Artisan Practiced Block Printing By Black Color (Syahi))

Color Making Process

Black (Syahi)

It's made with three natural ingredients: jaggery, water, and rusted iron. Heat is applied to iron, which is then removed and cooled. The rusty iron is then placed in a drum with jaggery and water, which is then left in the sun for 10-15 days. The escaping water is combined with tamarind seed powder and heated again, yielding a black hue that is ready to print.

( Drum filled with Jaggery, Water, and Rust Iron )

Red (Begar)

It's created with Babool Gond (a babool tree extract) + Alum + Water.

This red hue is visible after printing and washing because it reacts with alizarie water and dawoodia flowers in a copper vat to produce a clear and dark shade of red.

( Fabric Boiled in Copper Vat with Alizarin and dawoodia flowers )

Mustard (Brown)

Tamarind seeds are powdered by making them better, thicker in fluid structure, and cooking them on low heat. Then, for an exact shade of earthy colored tone, blend it in with potassium dichromate and a smidgeon of Pigment lemon yellow, and it's done.

(Women Practiced Block Printing By Mustard Color)

Motifs and Patterns

Traditional Bagru printing motifs are enormous in size and have powerful lines. These designs are typically geometric, with hints of floral and natural patterns thrown in for good measure. The color palette and sort of motifs utilized in Bagru prints make it easy to recognize. Bagru print has changed with the times and now requires greater market exposure to stay alive. It is vital to encourage and support the local craft and the local craftsman in order to preserve the historic craft's tradition. We at Printroots are doing everything we can to expand opportunities for crafters and promote the craft on a worldwide scale.

Thanks to ARTISANS who change the things according to the demand.

Hand block printing has long been regarded as one of the most revered arts, having persisted for centuries. Apart from the huge demand for saris, suits, tops, and dresses in the garment business, it also caters to the accessories market, with handbags, clutches, and even jewelry items using hand-block motifs. This block printing technique is employed in both the fashion and interior design industries, where products like bed sheets, bed coverings, pillow and cushion covers, table cloths, and curtains are becoming increasingly popular.

The enormous efforts that go into each stage of the block printing process make the art genuinely deserving of the worldwide attention and adoration it receives. The Geographical Indication certificate (GI tag) given to Bagru Block print in 2010 and 2011 not only recognized the distinctiveness and beauty of the art form but also gave its exceptionally gifted Chhipa community a special identity.


These textiles are fragile and should be cleaned in cold water with a light detergent. Colors should be washed separately whenever possible. Fabrics should not be pre-soaked and should be dried in the shade away from direct sunlight. Fabrics that have been blocking printed should be ironed on the reverse side of the printing.

5 best Bagru prints from the Printroots.

One of the best or enchanting collections from The Printroots is Bagru print fabric which has the timeless charm to embrace your abode. So let's have a look at some Handpicked Bagru print fabric from The Printroots that is worth buying.

Chrysanthemum Carmine Cotton Hand Block Printed Fabric

Chrysanthemum print will define your happy mood and its floral ballets can make you love with this. These hand-block prints are made with the timeless techniques of Bagru and Ornate.

Tusker Red Hand Block Printed Fabric

This hand-block print reminds us of grasslands blowing gently into the sweet afternoon wind. Created with the objective of bringing you a feeling of calmness and ease.

Phool Jhaalar Syahi Cotton Hand Block Printed Fabric

Phool Jhaalar Syahi Print is a bold impulsive floral creeper twisted crosswise. This print movement seems like flowing water.

Peonies Mustard Cotton Hand Block Printed Fabric

Just dive into these floral patterns of Peonies Mustard, these heritage prints will embrace you with their charm. Your summer wardrobe definitely has blank space for the same

Willow Red Cotton Hand Block Printed Fabric

Mesmerizing as the appearance of October evening and refreshed like the first shower in April, these prints are undoubtedly made for your summer wardrobe

All these fabric has the Elements of Elegance and Grace that would surely leave an embark of sophistication that never let you feel comprised with comfort and coziness.

To fold up.

Bagru prints are nothing but more than a heritage for the Rajasthan. No one is untouched by its elegance and witnessed its immense hand block art for years. Truly elegant and mesmerizing prints from the Bagru hand block printing with indigo dying. These prints from the Printroots are must-have fabric in your ensemble to refresh your mind with its surreal texture and enchanting hues.