what you RESIST, persists...

BATIK means wax writing.
Atelier OM sample  2012
Batik is best known as a cloth that is traditionally made using manual wax - resist dyeing techniques. 

It is a method of textile decoration executed by partially coating the cloth in designs of wax and then dyeing the cloth with color, often repeated multiple times. The waxed areas keep the original underlying color and dye takes everywhere else. When the wax is removed by washing, the contrast between the dyed and undyed areas makes patterns. 
To create intricate unique designs, an artist may employ etching, discharge dyeing, stencils and use a variety of different tools for waxing and dyeing. There are even various wax recipes with different resist values. 
beeswax + paraffin
Artisans may work with silk, cotton, wool, leather, paper, or even wood and ceramics with cold dyes in natural or synthetic colors. Some of the best effects in batik are often achieved by chance.
Discoveries show batik already existed as an ancient art form in in 4th century BCE Egypt where it was used to wrap mummies - linen was soaked in wax and fine designs were made by the use of a sharp tool. In Africa, it was originally practised by the Yoruba tribe in Nigeria, Soninke and Wolof in Senegal.In Asia, the technique was practiced and perfected in China during the T'ang dynasty (618-907 CE), in Japan during the Nara period (645-794 CE. While Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand are known for their block printing (tjab) method to create batik on a large scale, batik is still predominately made by hand in Sri Lanka and India.

The history of Indian batik can be traced back 2000 years. Indians were conversant with the resist method of printing designs on cotton fabrics long before any other nation had even tried it. Rice starch and wax were initially used for printing on fabrics. The revival of batik in India began in the 20th century when it was introduced as a subject at the famous university  started by Rabindranath Tagore at Shantiniketan near Calcutta, West Bengal.

Sushumna, a Bengali dye master watches over a cauldron
All images are from our partner's fair trade rural Artisan  project that uplifts local Bengali women by training them in this art of wax resist and dying and supporting them to manage and market batik products from their village studio. They make sarees, stoles and meters of fabrics. They work on commissions and their own designs.
coal for boiling up dyes
mud stove

boil myrobolum for black dye
cold dye baths ready
drying dyes in sun

Some examples of AtelierOM batik designs for 2012:
for scarves + meters
for stoles + meters
for stoles + meters
for stoles 
for stoles + meters

All inquiries please contact AtelierOM@gmail.com
All images are copyright Atelier OM.