Rehabar Handloom – Saree Weavers in India

Fabric Printing Techniques of Maheshwari Sarees

Fabric Printing Techniques of Maheshwari Sarees

Today wherever you will look, the world is full of prints. The mesmerizing art of prints such as monochrome of zebra, hues of peacock’s feather, leopard’s markings, or petals of the lotus, are both intricate and mystic. It depends on how you see it or how you want others to look at it. These prints are inspired by mythology, mixed with contemporary and reinvented from the pages of history. The journey of fabric printing techniques is far more complicated than it seems.

Printing is an art, you can’t rush it.

It is the brainstorming that makes it the way it is, apart from the creative process. If you want to know about fabric printing techniques or would like to try them, here is everything that you want to know about prints on fabric. There are many different techniques to let the color bond with the material, and there are also several aspects to it.

Three Different Methods for Fabric Printing Techniques

  1. Direct Printing – This is one of the most natural fabric printing techniques. It includes block printing, stamp printing, or hand printing. This method involves printing directly on the fabric with paints or dyes.
  2. Discharge Printing – This method uses a bleaching agent. This bleaching agent is applied in a pattern on a dyed fabric so it doesn’t leave color on the bleached part.
  3. Resist Printing – This method uses a resist paste which is made up of wax and applied to a dyed piece of fabric. The waxed part doesn’t accept the color and the dye doesn’t leave any pigmentation on the waxed surface.

Based on the Three Methods Above, These are the Fabric Printing Techniques

1. Block Printing

Block printing is one of the most common and most used fabric printing techniques. This technique involves the age-old craft of using Sheesham wood blocks to hand carve a design on the fabric surface. This method was originated in Rajasthan and is speculated to be around since the 12th century. This process needs both precision and patience. This process is done by carving the wood with your desired design and repeating the process along with chalked reference line. Sarees, Dupattas, home lines, table cloths, quilts, and cotton robes basically anything can be block printed. The suitable fabric for block printing is silk, cotton, and sico.

Fabric Printing Techniques

2. Screen Printing

Screen Printing is also known as silkscreen printing or serigraphy. A mesh is used to print on specific areas. Some of the fabric is made impermeable by using a blocking made of nylon. Screen painting can be done using a screen, mesh or even films to transfer the print or colour on the surface. Fabrics such as cotton, linen, sico and silk make the perfect surface for screen printing. However, natural fabrics are the best for screen printing as they absorb the paint quite effortlessly and makes the result quite mesmerizing.

3. Heat Transfer Printing

Heat Transfer Printing has been in the trend for quite sometime now. This process is also called thermal printing or digital printing. This method is quite inexpensive and accessible for most of the garment industry. A heat pressed machine and a printing machine is used to transfer the design on the surface of fabric. A stencil or pattern is transferred digitally on the paper and later it is to be printed on the desired area with the help of heat rollers.

Fabric Printing Techniques

4. Ink-Jet Printing

This printing technique gets it name from the ink jet printer which you use with your compute to print our stuff. By using digital inkjet printing technology digital textile printing can be done on several fabrics. This technique has its existence since 1968. It got popularity in the 1990s but got patented in the same year. this printing technique can retain and bring out brilliant colors with perfect detailing. Ink Jet Printing is expensive but and eco friendlier way of printing.

Types of Printing Suitable for Different Kind of Designs and Fabric

  • Digital Printing – Complicated prints on fabric of a t shirt i.e. cotton and sico
  • Flat Screen Printing – For basic and simple designs
  • Pigment Printing – For low to medium complexity designs and quick output
  • Sublimation Printing – Polyester Printing


Summing up, we hope that this blog will help you figure out your patterns and prints. Each fabric marries a unique prints and creates a beautiful harmony with fabric and forms beautiful colors. Also, do checkout our absolute mesmerizing print sarees by Rehabar Handloom here.