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Fair Trade & Our Artisans

Block Printing

Artisans apply block print patterns to ‘kora’ - unbleached natural cotton fabric. To start printing, an artisan evenly applies dye to a hand-carved wooden block. The fabric is then hand-stamped, firmly and steadily, starting from the outer border and extending inward. This is a deceptively simple art - each piece features dozens, if not hundreds, of careful impressions. Once the artisan has finished printing with a specific color and block, he or she cleans the block and must often wait for the cloth to dry before continuing. Then, they first apply outline colors and shapes and then use blocks, designed to precisely fill in parts of the pattern. The artisan group we work with in North West India, employs marginalized women and men, whose communities were displaced in the late eighties, losing their homes and farming lands in the process. Besides their homes, artisans lost access to wood, water and other natural resources available to them. The artisan group offers a sustainable source of fair income.

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