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Kalamkari Quick Facts


Southern and Coastal Andhra Pradesh and parts of Coastal Tamil Nadu

Major centers of production

Shrikalahasti (Andhra Pradesh) and Machilipatnam (Andhra Pradesh)

Medium and techniques

Painted and bock-printed textiles: In Srikalahasti, the pattern is drawn and filled in with special pens made out of bamboo and cotton. In Machilipatnam, the line drawing done with a pen is transferred onto wooden blocks which are carved and then used to print the fabric.


i. Cotton cloth/ Silk

ii. Cow/buffalo dung: a natural bleaching agent

iii. Myrobalan nuts: mordant for black colour

iv. Iron pieces and jaggery : for preparing black colour 

v. Alum:  mordant for red color

vi. Chavalkudi: dyed to obtain red in the alum painted portion, available as twigs

vii. Surulpattu: bark of a tree, added with chavalkudi to enhance the red shade

viii. Jaji leaves: leveling agents during developing of red color

ix. Myrobalan Flowers: for producing yellow color

x. Indigo Blue Cake: extracted from leaves of Indigo plant, for creating blue color

xi. Buffalo Milk: added to avoid spreading of color

xii. Tamarind Twigs: for making outlines   

xiii. Charcoal pencil

xiv. Kalam (pen) made of bamboo

Status Today

The craft is thriving and a variety of products are being manufctured today, such as dress materials, temple canopies and backdrops, prayer mats, curtains, bed sheets, wall hangings etc.