Today, the fashion industry has become a melting pot culture and tradition. Many fashion designers have incorporated their colourful tradition and cultural roots into their dress and other clothing masterpieces, infusing them into today’s modern style and trend.
Recently, Korea’s traditional clothing called Hanbok has garnered a lot of attention after introducing it in a modern contemporary look, perfect for the taste of Millenial and Gen Z generations.
One of the most well-loved and respected traditional fabrics in the world is the Indonesian Batik. As a matter of fact, this artful fabric was included in UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2009 for its historical value. Batik has been used in fashion, making the modern Batik dress available to everyone.
Continue reading this article to learn more about the Indonesian Batik and how to take care of your Batik dress in Singapore.
All You Need To Know About The Indonesian Batik
Batik is one of the most sought items for travellers in Indonesia. It is impossible not to see and appreciate one in the country. Fortunately, Batik has now made available and accessible to people around the world.
You can now buy your own modernBatik dress in a Batik shop in Singapore.
What is Batik?
The word “Batik” is derived from the Javanese words “Amba,” meaning draw and “Titik,” meaning dot or point. The term now refers to the process of dyeing fabric. The significance of Batik goes beyond its historical relevance. The craftsmanship and the practice of making a Batik have made this one of a kind fabric a living art.
Although the origins remain unknown, it is believed that Batik has existed for more than 1,000 years. Because of the Silk Road centuries ago, Batik has reached Central Asia, Malay Archipelago, Middle East and Africa.
Even after the Silk Road period, Batik has been embraced by many cultures, with a Batik shop sprouting at every corner in Singapore and other countries. Batik fabric has been used for a modern Batik maxi dressand other fashion garments.
The process used in Batik is wax-resist dyeing. The wax prevents the dye from penetrating through the fabric. This method creates negative patterns and design. Wax is also used to coat and polish bright and vibrant colours.
Although this technique had been widely practised in different parts of the world during the older times, the intricate, artistic expression of each pattern, colours, and unique designs of the Javanese Batik stood out. It was recognised by many countries in the 19th century.
The Indonesian tradition of Batik artistry goes beyond mere designs. Each pattern a Batik artist creates has a deeper meaning. It is also believed that Javanese Royalty has supported the Batik along with other art forms, including other traditional art forms. The designs have become a mix of Indian, Japanese, Chinese, and Dutch influences over time.
Today, the artful and intricate patterns of Batik has been the brand mark of Indonesia, preserving the art by incorporating it into the fashion industry in the form of modern Batik dressand clothing.
The Four Types of Indonesian Batik
With the popularity of the Indonesian Batik, it is not surprising that it has developed types of Batik-making process. These Batik-making processes have been used to produceBatik fabric for the maxi dress, garments, and other clothing. These Batik fabric products are sold in an authentic Batik shop in countries like Singapore.
Freehand Drawing Batik
Authentic Batik Tulis, also known as the hand-drawn Batik, is one of the most expensive Batik fabrics you can find around the world. The patterns of Batik Tulis are all handmade, from the designs traced using a pencil to the actual Batik wax-resist dyeing process. Batik artisans use different tools, including Canting, an instrument that retraces the pencil pattern with hot wax.
Because Batik Tulis are entirely handmade, it takes a long time to finish just one fabric, considering the intricacy, precision, and uniqueness of each pattern and design.
The Batik Tulis fabric is the evidence and product of Batik artisan’s artistry, culture, and deep respect for the craft.
Batik Tulis is one of the priced Batik varieties in the market. You can buy Batik Tulis in a Batik shop in Singapore.
Batik Cap, commonly known as stamped Batik or block-printed Batik, is a Batik-making process that uses copper cap imprints. These copper cap stamps hold hot wax for printing. The Batik makers press the plates or the moulds into the cloth to print the Batik pattern.
This method is believed to have originated in India in the 1600s. During this period, the stamps used were made of intricately carved hardwood.
The block-printing method has been used to speed up the production of Batik. Compared to Batik Tulis, Batik Cap has less design and pattern complexity.
Batik Cap is a cheaper alternative for Batik Tulis. That is why it is widely used in Batik clothes and dress available online in Singapore. Batik Cap also uses high-quality fabric and textile. Many Batik collectors carefully inspect each print and pattern of Batik fabrics to determine the authentic Batik Tulis and Batik Cap.
Combination Batik is the blending of Batik Cap or the block-printed Batik and Batik Tulis or freehand drawing Batik. The combination allows large-sized motifs and designs from the block-printed Batik and intricate, precise, and unique patterns of authentic Batik Tulis.
Many Batik textiles use combination Batik to flaunt the beauty and maximise the production of Batik fabrics.
Combination Batik fabrics can be more expensive than Batik Cap but are way cheaper than Batik Tulis. The fabrics used for the Batik dress online in Singapore are sometimes combination Batik. You can buy combination Batik fabrics and textiles in a Batik shop in countries like Singapore.
To further speed up the production of Batik fabrics, Batik makers have incorporated machines to print bulk Batik fabrics and textiles in a short period of time to meet the demand.
Because of the technological printing system, these Batiks are produced in large quantities. Most of them are readily available in the market. However, despite the intricacy and precision of designs of machine-printed Batik, its price is still relatively low compared to other Batik varieties.
On the other hand, Plangkan Batik uses the screen-printing method. There are times buyers and collectors have mistaken Plangkan Batik for Batik Tulis.
Machine-printed Batik fabrics are used for a cheap Batik dress available online in Singapore and other countries. Most large Batik textiles in the market are made of machine-printed Batik fabrics.
Because of the sophisticated technology, it is hard for ordinary consumers to tell authentic Batik Tulis, Batik Cap, Combination Batik, Machine-printed Batik, and Plangkan Batik apart. There are cases where Batik Cap and Plangkan Batik are priced as much as the authentic Batik Tulis. That is why it is necessary to distinguish which Batik is one of a kind.
How To Identify Authentic Batik Tulis and Machine-printed Batik
Batik is one of the most popular fabrics not just in Indonesia but around the world. Because of its rich heritage and sophisticated craftsmanship, the traditionally-rooted Batik has been added to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
Because of the popularity of Batik, many people searched fora Batik dress online in Singapore. To avoid being a victim of Batik overpricing, here are the effective ways to distinguish an authentic Batik Tulis from machine-printed Batik.
Batik uses the wax-resist dyeing process. In this process, the Batik artisan uses hot wax to trace patterns on the fabric. The dye cannot penetrate the waxed design or area of the fabric. Therefore, during the tub dyeing, the pattern guides remain untouched and blank, creating a negative effect on both sides of the cloth.
You will determine if the Batik fabric is indeed an authentic Batik Tulis if the reversed side of the textile has the same consistent vibrant colours. It may be impossible to tell which side is the front and the back because of the consistency and quality of the colours.
Like any other ordinary clothing in the market, machine-printed Batik fabrics have a faded-coloured reverse side. So, before you buy a Batik Tulis maxi dress in Singapore, check the inside and outside prints of the cloth. An authentic Batik Tulis modern dress can be worn inside out!
The flawlessness of the patterns
Handmade materials are known for their tiny errors, similar to an authentic Batik Tulis. Although Batik artisans are highly skilled and detail-oriented, it is inevitable for them to commit little mistakes. Their intricate designs may have inconsistencies such as thicker strokes, stains, and other minuscule flaws and differences that make authentic Batik Tulis unique and one of a kind.
Machine-printed Batiks have flawless designs, from the uniformed thickness of each stroke to the spaces in between each pattern.
An authentic Batik Tulis with complex and intricate motifs can’t have a flawless design, especially the larger textiles. All handmade materials are prone to error.
If you are purchasing a Batix textile in a Batik shop in Singapore,inspect the accuracy and consistency of each pattern and design. Remember, these inconsistencies are what makes each Batik Tulis unique, similar to our fingerprints.
Deep and earth-tone colours
Vibrant and bright-coloured dyed are widely available in the market. In fact, many fashion houses experiment with tons of different shades, hues, and tones of the same colour.
However, authentic Batik Tulis use natural dyes to their fabric. These dyes come from flowers, leaves, barks, and roots. It gives a deeper, richer, and earthy tone to the cloth compared to vibrant-coloured machine-printed Batik.
Machine-printed Batik may offer designs with wider colour variations. Chemical-based dyes are hard to remove as well, whereas natural dyes fade after several washes. However, it still gives a vintage and organic look.
An authentic modern BatikTulisdressusually has deeper and richer tones.
Five Reasons To Love Indonesian Batik
Truly, Batik is widely loved around the globe, but it still needs more appreciation. Batik is more than just an exotic fabric design and fashion ornament. Each pattern has its meaning, stories, and legend. So when you happen to visit a Batik shop in Singapore or see a modern Batik dress, pay attention to the tiniest details and intricacy of the motif, and it will tell you a whole lot more.
Here are the reasons to love Batik fabrics.
It is a Craft With a Rich Heritage
Batik existed 1,000 years ago, and getting a hand on an authentic Batik is like experiencing a centuries-old history. Batik is today’s living craft. It is also believed to have been worn by royalties. Wearing a Batik is like reliving history.
Batik Has Meaning and Stories
Do you know that Indonesian Batik patterns have legends? The Batik pattern called Kawung is believed to be the favourite pattern of the Yogyakarta Sultanate, that only the royal family were only allowed to wear one. Who knows, maybe the Batik dress you bought online in Singapore has a legendary story behind it.
Batik Has Penetrated The Global Market
Many international fashion designers have incorporated Batik prints in their collection. Several Hollywood celebrities have been seen wearing Batik clothing as well. You will never go out of style with your Batik maxi dress.
Men and Women Can Wear Batik
One of the advantages of Batik is its prints are unisex or can be worn by men and women. Modern men’s fashion also incorporates Batik in their collections, from polo to shirts down to pants. Batik is not limited to a maxi dressalone.
Batik Is An Art Masterpiece
It takes a lot of time for a Batik artisan to finish an entire Batik masterpiece. If you prefer admiring the craftsmanship of Batik fabric on the wall, you can frame and display it in your home!
Get your own Batik fabrics at Anmako Singapore. Anmako Singapore provides authentic and high-quality Batik Tulis, Batik Cap, and Combination Batik. Witness the beauty of Batik with Anmako Singapore.