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Blue Goddess "NEELA"
Method / Techniques

Indigo Neela is my studio's centerpiece. She showcases the beauty of natural indigo, which ferment and store in a clay pot. .


Tie-Dyeing :​​ The Indian Bandhani

The Indian Bandhani technique, a traditional dyeing method found across India, employs intricate tying and knotting of fabric before dyeing. By skillfully tying, twisting, or sewing the fabric, specific sections resist the dye, preserving their natural colour. The result is a stunning array of unique patterns, reminiscent of the tie-dye technique found in many parts of the world.


Batik - Bee Wax 

In this traditional dyeing method, beeswax is used as a resist agent on textiles. At Ho-li-ka Studio I apply melted beeswax that sourced from our bee hives and then onto the fabric in specific patterns or designs before dyeing. The beeswax creates a barrier that prevents the dye from penetrating the waxed areas, resulting in unique and intricate patterns with a characteristic wax resist effect. This technique is celebrated for its versatility and the beautiful textures it creates on textiles.


Clay and Rice  Resist Technique

Indian Ajrakh / Clay Or Mud  resist 


Ajrakh is a technique used in textile block printing that involves resist dyeing. The resulting fabric is typically made of cotton and has floral and geometric patterns printed in darker colors like indigo and red. The word ajrakh may have originated from the Arabic word azraq, which means "blue" or "indigo", or from the Hindi phrase "aaj rakh", which means "keep for today".


The creation process for Ajrakh is time-consuming and demanding. The fabric is washed, beaten, and rinsed to remove impurities and make it soft. It is then treated with a mixture of castor oil, camel or goat dung, and soda ash in a process called saaj. After drying, the fabric is dyed using harda, which gives it a yellow tinge. It is then printed on low tables using a resist made of lime and natural gum. The resist acts as a barrier that is resistant to Madder as well as indigo, appearing as white in the finished product. I use same method in my creation with single colours. 


If the cloth is to be printed on both sides, the resist is also applied to the reverse side.

Then, multiple applications of dye are applied carefully to ensure the rice glue does not lose form. After dyeing, the glue is washed off and the stencilled pattern is revealed. At Ho-li-Ka, both Western stencil methods and the traditional Ajrakh Block Printing Method


Indigo Gradation Dyeing

At Ho-Li-Ka I meticulously control the immersion time and number of dye applications to achieve various levels of colour concentration in my fabric creations. This allows me to create seamless colour gradations, transitioning from crisp white to rich deep indigo hues, showcasing my dedication to traditional dyeing techniques and artistic precision. 

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