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Genue Inc.
June 26, 2019

Block Shop Textiles – Old Fashioned Printing for Modern Textiles

Block Shop Textiles is a Los Angeles based design studio founded by sisters Lily and Hopie Stockman.

 

block shop textiles scarves

Block Shop Scarves

If I were to describe Block Shop Textile’s signature style, I would have to say bold, geometric and colorful. And while all of their printed goods do have a unifying style and specific look to them, the process of creating these goods is just as important to the end result.

 

Each Block Shop design is created using a hard carved wood block. Block printing is a traditional way of printing on textiles or paper, with the earliest surviving samples of this type of printing on cloth dating back to 220 AD. Wild!

 

Very different from the computer aided design printing of today, block printing begins with artistically carving a piece of wood and then using natural dyes and mud based resists, where colors are printed on lengths of fabric with each block stamp being carefully thumped and placed to create intricate patterns and overall design.

 

When the Stockman sisters started Block Shop in 2013, they were committed to using the traditional block method, so they started to work with a family print shop based out of Jaipur, India who they had met and learned from.

 

Fast forward to modern day Block Shop, and the sister’s work with a few family run print businesses, as well as weavers local to Jaipur area. They are an interesting example of a “slow fashion” company, I think they really are doing the best that they can to produce and consume wisely. They are also transparent about working with their partners in India, and how they continue to do so. In their mission statement, they discuss fair wages and Block Shop’s commitment to reinvestment in the worker’s community, with support that is both financial and educational.

 

As Block Shop has grown over the years, they have branched out into new products (like their new robes), this has been fun to see from a design perspective and rewarding to see from a social empowerment perspective. Good design can go hand in hand with responsible production. To see more of their work and story, check out their website!

 

What do you think of Block Shop Textiles? Should more designers approach their work from a “slow fashion” perspective? Let us know your opinion in a comment below!

 

If you enjoyed this article, check out some of our other favorite textile designers: calm and cool geometric prints by Caroline Z Hurley, chic and modern quilted heirlooms by Louise Gray, and water-like shibori patterns by Rebecca Atwood!

 

 

 

 

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