Head & Hands is delighted to welcome Studio BAGRU on a rare visit from India to London. Delve into the rich textile tradition of India, learn how to block print, design your own tote bag and “upcycle” your preloved clothes in this 2.5 hour workshop with Studio Bagru founder, Jeremy Fritzhand.
The workshop will begin with a short talk by Jeremy on the rich history and cultural significance of block printing in northern India. He will share his story of how he set up a pioneering social enterprise in Bagru.
After a demonstration of the technique, students will have an opportunity to use any combination of the 100+ hand carved wooden blocks travelled from India.
You will be provided a tote bag to print on and are invited to “upcycle” up to three items of existing clothing or textiles with bold and exciting new prints.
You can expect to:
Learn about the history of block printing
Explore how to effectively apply colour and match patterns
Discuss the importance of sustainability and “slow fashion”
Leave with your own hand printed tote bag with a small selection of Indian treats and up to 3 items of your own clothing refreshed with a new block print.
Up to three items of clothing or textiles that you’d like to print on in addition to the tote bag provided
Wear clothing you do not mind getting a little inky, or bring an apron
About Jeremy Fritzhand
Jeremy first travelled to India in 2010 when he was awarded the Minerva fellowship to assist in setting up a social enterprise. Living and working alongside the Chippa people of Bagru, Jeremy founded Bagru Textiles with an aim of bridging the gap between block-printing artisans and consumers around the world. Located 30kms from Jaipur, the bustling and bombastic capital, Bagru village has remained loyal to its history, culture and craftsmanship and is now one of the last existing hubs for block printing in northern India. Jeremy now splits his time between managing his central Jaipur Boutique - Studio Bagru, running block printing tours and workshops and assisting up and coming brands with textile sourcing.
About Block Printing
Block printing is around 3000 years old, with Indian textiles referenced by Pliny the Elder and found in Egyptian kings tombs. The Chippa (literally people who stamp or print) revere the traditional materials they use and many regard their work as a form of worship. A designs life begins with the careful carving of printing blocks. One block is needed for each colour in the design and each block can take as many as two days to carve.
Blocks are commonly carved from two types of wood in Bagru. Teak is used for its durability in background blocks and rosewood for its hardness and use in creating detailed and intricate blocks. Once the dyes are mixed and poured into trays, printing is ready to begin. Blocks are aligned by sight before the rhythmic “one-two” punch of the hands transfers the dye to the cloth.