Batik printing has been around for almost 1000 years dating back to around the 12th century. The word “Batik” is Javanese in origin and is a combination of 2 words; ‘amba’ which means ‘to write’ and ‘titik’ which means ‘dot’.

Batik Printing – How it is Created and the Process Involved


The process for creating batik printing is lengthy and can take up to a year. The fabric is washed and soaked before the patterns are applied initially using a pencil. Hot wax, made from bees wax or of paraffin, is then used and traced over the drawings of the dots and lines. This is done using a spouted tool called a canting for small printing and more detailed work or by using a copper stamp called a cap for larger areas and pieces of fabric. The wax is applied and then the fabric is dyed. The wax is then removed using hot boiling water leaving the patterns of the batik artist on the fabric. This process would be repeated multiple times depending on the amount of fabric dyes and colour desired.

Batik printing has been and still is created in many countries around the world including Malaysia, Philippines, India, Sri Lanka, China and Nigeria, but has its roots in Java, Indonesia.

The traditional Indonesian style for wearing batik clothing is for daily wear and ceremonies in the form of sarongs. Different patterns are worn for different occasions as well as for different social rankings.

“Many Indonesian batik patterns are symbolic. Infants are carried in batik slings decorated with symbols designed to bring the child luck, and certain batik designs are reserved for brides and bridegrooms, as well as their families. Some designs are reserved for royalties, and even banned to be worn by commoners. Consequently, a person’s rank could be determined by the pattern of the batik he or she wore.” (

In Bali, batik fabric can be purchased from many local suppliers. There is also the option of having your own batik printing created, keeping in mind the length of time it can take to create these true works of art. We at Clothing Manufacturing Agent Bali can help you create your own batik printing fabric and utilize it in the mass production of your clothing.

Below are some images, taken from one of our suppliers, who create hand painted batik prints. These were for a Japanese designer that our manufacturer has been working with.

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