Published on February 6, 2014
By Indian Artisans Online
Major Crafts in Jodhpur Hand block printing (Dabu printing) Leather work (mojari) Dhurrie weaving Tie & Dye
Dabu Printing Concentration more in Pipar City (65 km from Jodhpur) Number of families involved in the craft reduced from 105 to just a handful Most artisans work on piecework or for the local markets Artisans still use natural dye A lot of rivalry within the artisan community Yasin Prints is the biggest printers in the area. They are suppliers to leading fashion brands Market: local, private customers, export and supply to some of the known brands like Fabindia.
Dabu printing process 1. A mixture of clay, chuna (calcium hydroxide) and gum (gond) is prepared and left overnight 2. The next day, wood blocks are dipped in this mixture and used for printing. 4. The cloth is left out to dry. This can become difficult during monsoon and winter, thus work usually slows down during that time. 5. After the cloth has dried completely it is dipped in the indigo tanks or ‘hauds’ 3. Wheat chaff is spread over the print to stop mud from dripping. 6. The cloth is then left out to dry
Dabu printing process 7. After which it is dipped in indigo again 10. The cloth is dried for the last time 8. After the final indigo dip it is left out to dry 9. Once the cloth is dry it is given the final wash. 11. Some of the raw materials used for dabu printing
Leather work Most widespread craft across Jodhpur and in the adjoining districts. Within Jodhpur city, mojari making is mostly done in Indira Colony, Siwanchi Gate and Sanjay Colony. Adjoining districts Pali and Jalore are also a hub for leather work. Some of the villages known for the craft are Jaitaran, Rohet, Satnara, Bhinmal, and Dhundera. The craft is practiced by the Jeengar community. Work is divided according to gender- men do the leather work and women do all the embroidery (kashidakari). Depending on the design, women get Rs 25-80 for making a pair of mojari kashida. Artisans work in small family units. Despite having market exposure, for most artisans locals form a major customer base. Due to this most of them have very limited design range. Mojaris from Bhinmal are an exception. They are of export quality and are world famous for exquisite male footwear.
Mojaris from Bhinmal
Mojaris from Jaitaran (Pali) Mojaris from Rohet (Pali)
Mojaris from Indira Colony (Jodhpur city)
Dhurrie Weaving Salawas in the outskirts of Jodhpur is renowned for dhurries Popular varieties include- Interlock, and camel wool dhurries Famous dhurrie makers in the areaPukhraj Dhurry Udyog, and Roopraj Dhurry Udyog There is no active dhurrie making in Salawas. Most of weavers have become traders. Dhurries are brought from places like Nagour, Agra, Punjab etc and sold under the name of Salawas dhurries Genuine weavers find it difficult to navigate their way through the network of middlemen. Artisans are well exposed to the market and know the latest trends Major buyers are exporters and tourists.
Tie & Dye
Tie & Dye Exporters and traders have got a firm hold over the craft. 80% of the artisans take up job work. Since it involves several steps from start to finish, the work is very scattered. Women play an important role in this craft as all the ‘bandhani’ (tying) work is done by them. Market for the product is very vast. Demand comes from both local customers and across country. The sector requires a huge amount of investment. Constant demand helps artisans earn well.
Other crafts Mother of Pearl Wood carving/painting Embossing Engraving Horn and bone work
Engraving Traditional engraving using metal ‘dies’ is a dying craft form. Award winning engraving artist Jagmohan Singh is the only one in Jodhpur who is still following tradition. His family has been doing engraving for almost 400 years. It is a skill has been passed on from father to son. His grandfather had created the first RBI imprint for Indian Rupee note. Works for royal families and foreign customers
Steps of engraving 1. Raw steel block is brought from the market 4.The carving is intricate and minute. Singh uses a magnifying lens to work. 2. The surface is smoothened and polished 5. A mirror image of the design to be printed is created on the steel block. Each block is for a different color 3. For carving out the ‘die’, the block is kept over a small wood block. This has been passed from his father 6. Once the die is ready, printing is done. Singh prints both on paper and metal.
Observations In Jodhpur the network of traders and middlemen is very strong. Most artisans have now become traders and are flourishing. Crafts like mother of pearl, bone carving and wood carving are highly mechanized. The units have shifted to the industrial area outside Jodhpur city. Most of the craft material and even finished goods come either from nearby districts like Pali, Jalore, Nagaur or are brought from places like Agra, Punjab, and Gujarat. There is no dearth of market exposure. Most artisans have traveled to cities like Delhi and are aware of the latest trends. A lot of help comes from organizations like NIFT, DC Handicrafts. Fashion and product designers have also helped artisans them learn contemporary designs. There is a high level of professional rivalry among the artisans. Raw material especially for leather work has become very expensive, therefore artisans rely not only on selling their products but in trading to make up the margins.
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