Tie and dye is a hand method of producing patterns in textiles by tying portions of the fabric or yarn so that they will not absorb the dye & is one of the most widely accepted and one of the very traditional methods of printing textiles in India.
Origin of Tie & Dye
It is difficult to trace the origins of this craft to any particular area. According to some references it first developed in Jaipur in the form of leheriya. But it is widely believed that it was brought to Kutch from Sindh by Muslim Khatris who are still the largest community involved in the craft.
Bandhni was introduced in Jamnagar when the city was founded 400 years ago. This city has now become one of the principal centers of bandhni, creating new pattern and experimenting with modern colors.
Major Centers of Tie & Dye
The centers of tie and dye (Bandhani & Shibori) fabrics, especially in Gujarat are Jamnagar in Saurashtra (the water in this area brings out the brightest red while dying), Bhuj in Kutchh. The finest tie & dye work of Rajasthan comes from Bikaner, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Barmer, Pali, Udaipur and Nathdwara. Rajasthan is well known for its Leheriya pattern - literally meaning waves.
The process of making tie and dye varies in Gujarat and Rajasthan. The patterns, designs and craftsmanship vary in both the regions. The craftsmen from Rajasthan are easily recognized because they grow a nail on their little finger to facilitate the lifting of cloth for tying or wear a small metal ring with a point where as in Gujarat they use seeds while tying the fabric.