Batik Fun

I love batik. Its colourful. It has different moods to it and more so because every piece is a master piece of its own. When I say moods its because you can design something cheery or moody or dark. And even when you paint, it carries your emotions with it.

My earliest memory of batik was of course the sarung batik that my nanny wore at home. And of course potato batik whereby we carved our design, dip the potato into the water colour and press it down on our piece of paper.

And as we progressed in school, batik became a hand drawn piece to which we applied our colours.

My latest experience was a full fledge batik making experience at Jadi Batek  We arrived at 1pm after a good power lunch. Well batik is fun but also is hard work. 

As soon as we arrived, we were taken on a tour by our batik instructor who is an artisan with Jadi Batek He explained the steps and we also witnessed the artisans at work. Obviously their work was fine craft as you will note compared to our first timers:P
fine work
Done with the tour and explanation, we were ready to start on ours. And we were raring to go since the made it look so easy kacang putih.

STEP 1: Choose your design 
Literally it is choose the design to trace with pencil before we move on to the wax side of things. Choosing itself was hard as we had so many choices!

STEP 2: Trace your design.
This is fun and a test of our eye sight. It does remind me of my primary school days of tracing out maps in geography lessons.

Simple enough for Haris to join us on this outing:D

Gladys concentrating on her tracing. And mind you, she did some freehand stuff too and improved on the original design.
STEP 3: Waxing (nope its not the waxing you think women do:)
Using an instrument called the chanting, we would wax over the pencil tracings. Again another highly skilled and quick hand "stunt". Too slow and the wax hardens inside your chanting which is a little like a fountain pen. Too fast and you'll get fat blobs of wax all over your fabric. The wax serves to prevent the colours from going into different parts of your design.

Terri in a diva smoking a pipe or is it a cigar? Ahem buts its a chanting:P

STEP 4: Choose your colours
We finally waxed our batik and mind you I think our backs nearly broke from doing it. But wait till the painting starts. You'll be standing bent over for a longer period of time. But even before we could start painting, you have to choose the right colours or rather your choice colours. Batik is colourful but when met with a choice of hundreds of colours you have a headache trying to choose which one you'll like.

So many colours and so many we dab them on toilet roles to choose our preferred colours.

STEP 5: Start painting
Now the "funnest" part! We get to apply the paint. And mind you this is delicate work because you'll be using water to dilute and create a shading effect on your masterpiece. The wax makes it easier because your desired colours won;t cross over to another spot unless you pretty much start splattering the paints in big dollops:P

My masterpiece which a tee shirt and bears my twitter nick missyblurkit

And now that I have completed a tee shirt, my next will be a scarf or perhaps another tee shirt? 

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