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Batik is an ancient art form of decorating cloth using wax and dye. The intricate technique, which is often referred to as wax-resist dyeing, predates written history, and is thought to have originated in Java, Indonesia, during the 6th or 7th century. The process is simple, yet complex at the same time—using a spouted tool called a canting, or a copper stamp called a cap, dye resistant wax is applied to the fabric to create an elaborate pattern. The applied wax, resists the dye, thus allowing the artisan to colour selectively by soaking the cloth in one colour. The fabric is then place into boiling water to remove the wax, and the process is repeated several times if multiple colours are desired. The process is similar to that of digital fabric printing, but rather than using industrial printing machines, everything is done by hand.
The origin of batik in Africa can, at times, be confusing. Although modern history would suggest that batik was introduced to Africa, by Dutch and English merchants, in the 19th century, the batik making process was practiced in Africa long before the arrival of colonial powers. In fact, one of the early sightings, of batik, can be traced back to Egypt in the 4th century BC.
Today, the art of wax-resist dyeing is highly developed, and outside of Java, some of the most beautiful batik fabric can be found in West Africa. The West Africans have adapted the Javanese technique by using various instruments, such as wooden stamps, sticks and brushes, to apply the wax, thus creating larger motifs, with thicker lines, and more colours—the end product is truly magnificent and one we endeavour to preserve, whilst adapting it to our contemporary world.
Tie-Dye (Stripe, Marble, Indigo and Kola Nut Dyeing)
While many believe that Tie-dye is a modern phenomenon, thought to have been invented in the United States, during the hippie period of the mid-1960s, the earliest written record dates back to ancient Asia. It is believed that as far back as the 6th century, the tie-dye technique was already fully developed in China and Japan. The process typically involved folding, twisting, and/or pleating a piece of fabric and binding it with string, followed by the application of natural dyes, made from berries, leaves and/or flowers. The manipulation of the fabric prior to the application of the dye is called 'resists', as it partially or completely prevents the applied dye from colouring targeted areas of the fabric. 
Today, more sophisticated techniques involve additional steps, including dyeing the fabric prior to the resist application. This is then followed by multiple sequential dye/resist steps, and the use of other types of resists, such as stitching, rubber bands and stencilling.
Much like Asia, Africa has a rich history in tie-dyeing that has been practiced on the continent for centuries. In fact, the Northern region of Nigeria is renowned, even today, for having indigo dye pits located in and around Kano. In West Africa, as a whole, one of the most prominent tie-dyeing methods is to have a cloth tied or stitched tightly so that the dye, which is often made from indigo or kola nut, does not penetrate the fabric. After drying the fabric in the sun, it is untied to reveal intricate irregular patterns. Whilst tie dyeing in West Africa remains commonplace, very few artisans continue to use the traditional age old techniques that were passed down by our forefathers—the end product is one of true marvel and one that will remain a key part of our brand identity and ethos.