New Batiks! Get The Island Feel In Your Home
If you’re dreaming of an island getaway but can’t quite get there, do the next best thing. Deck out your home, and wardrobe, in beautiful batik fabrics that will make you feel like you’re living up the Balinese dream…
The incredible artistry and craftsmanship that goes into creating batiks is mind boggling, with some cloths taking up to a year to make. But the outcome is well worth the wait – the unique and intricate designs have big impact. Fashionistas love the hand-crafted and light-weight fabrics, from sarongs and sundresses to shirts, jackets and children’s clothing. Quilters relish in the bespoke hand-painted patterns and prints, not to mention the huge variety and designs in any one colour palette, which work magic as contemporary style quilts. Equally, home decorators can create beautiful interior looks with a subtle ‘island’ feel, by using batiks for cushion covers, curtains, table covers and bedding.
Here’s your guide to beautiful batiks and how they can work in your life. Pass the Pina Colada…
Morning Dew in Petrol, $39/m, 140cm/w. Sakura in Jet, $39/m, 240cm/w. Tidal in Seagrass, $49/m, 273cm/w. Available in-store at No Chintz.
How Batiks are Created
Batiks are hand-made using a time-intensive process that includes wax-resist dyeing the cloth. Artisans draw or paint intricate dots and lines to create unique patterns on the cloth, one colour at a time, using the wax-resist method to protect other parts of the cloth from colour transferring. The cloth can also be printed using a copper stamp called a cap. The cloth is then boiled, removing the wax (often beeswax or mixed paraffin), dried and then another colour can be added using the same process, forming one-off designs. For intricate patterns, the process can take up to a year, as each colour is applied, boiled, dried and repeated.
The ancient art form and technique has been passed down through the generations and originated mainly in parts of Indonesia, particularly Java, as well as Malaysia, Nigeria, India and other countries. It was even used in ancient Egypt, where linen was treated and designs created then used to wrap mummies in.
Mayflower in Ice, $39/m, 140cm/w. Secret Garden in Ice, $49/m, 273cm/w. Sanctuary in Ash, $39/m, 140cm/w. Available in-store at No Chintz.
In Indonesia, Batiks are often created with symbolic patterns. Children are carried in batik slings with symbols to bring them good luck. Brides and grooms, as well as their families wear batiks during the ceremony, and historically, batik symbols worn by Indonesians could identify their status in society.
A selection of batiks from a batik gallery in Ubud, Bali. Festival in Jewel, $39/m, 140cm/w and Whisper in Ice, $49/m, 273cm/w, available in-store at No Chintz.
Batik’s In The Home
The light-weight island style designs make great airy curtains, but be warned – they need backing, or the sun will fade your treasured fabrics quick smart. Try a polyester sun filter as backing, which will protect them from water glare, sun damage and it will also give the curtains more body. Or, try Roman blinds with a lining or cotton sateen block-out. The most effective and easiest way to incorporate batiks into your soft furnishings is as cushions. Use a range of prints and patterns in the same colour family and mix up the shapes and sizes of your cushions to create depth and visual appeal.
Lines and dots are a trademark batik feature. Patterns are drawn onto the cloth, applied using the wax –resist method one colour at a time, then dipped into a dye bath three to four times.
Hailstone in Mist, $39/m, 140cm/w. Midnight Summer in Jet, $39/m, 140cm/w. Isabelle in French Grey, $49/m, 273cm/w. Available in-store at No Chintz.
Quilting with Batiks
Often created in colour stories and drawing inspiration from nature’s surroundings, batiks can often be found commonly in earthy colours including browns and taupe, or coastal colours with seagreen, blues and sand. But bright colour ways are just as popular for a sunny and beachy effect. Quilters love creating stories using contemporary quilting techniques – mixing large, abstract shapes like rectangles and oblongs with smaller pieces. Batiks can also be used to create bedding, from light-weight doona covers, joining mixed designs and fabrics together, as well as pillow cases.
Morning Dew in Sage, $39/m, 140cm/w. Ria in Moss, $39/m, 140cm/w. Neverland in Mist, $39/m, 140cm/w. Available in-store at No Chintz.
Contemporary Batik Fashion
Today, batiks are often used and selected according to their beautiful designs and artistry to create amazing, unique fashion pieces. Dressmakers love the light-weight cotton, which works as a great, natural and breathable summer fabric. Think dresses, skirts, shirts and scarves. Butterfly designs look divine as little girl’s frocks. Stroll along any Balinese beach and you’ll stumble across myriad sarongs featuring the gorgeous designs.
Check out the beautifully hand-crafted Batiks available in-store at No Chintz.
x Miss Stitched