How To Print Fabric With Indian Wood Block Stamps

fabric printing tutorial

This is a short tutorial about how I print fabric with my Indian wood block stamps. In the comments, Asha asked how I’d printed my full circle lehenga.


  • fabric paint suitable for printing
  • print stamps (bought or DIY linoleum stamps)
  • a piece of felt
  • paintbrush
  • pre-washed and ironed cotton or silk fabric

About fabric print color: there are different brands, all have their advantages and disadvantages. To print fabric, the fabric paint has to be thicker than ordinary fabric paint. Some of my fabric paints already have thickener added and are ready for printing, while some are too runny, such as my silk paints, and need extra thickener, which can be bought separately.

Why to wash and iron your fabric prior to printing:  Often new fabrics have some finishing which has to be removed so that the fabric paint sticks to the fibers. And if the fabric is too wrinkled after washing it should be ironed to have a smooth surface for printing.

Printing on fabric

Protect your clothes and table.  Brush some fabric paint on the piece of felt. I find that 100% wool felt/ boiled wool works best as stamp pad, but I’ve also already used polyester fleece fabric.

Press the fabric stamps onto the stamp pad until the stamp is evenly covered with paint.

fabric stamping

Then print the stamp onto the fabric. Continue printing your fabric, apply more fabric paint to your stamp pad if necessary.

Clean the wooden stamps and paintbrush immediately after printing with water.

Let the printed fabric dry for some hours or a day, then set the fabric paint according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The fabric paint I use has to ironed with a hot iron. This is what takes the most time in the printing process – especially if one prints a large piece of fabric.

Two-color fabric print

Here’s a method if you want to print your fabric with two colors in one step.

two color fabric print in one step tutorial

Brush the fabric color directly onto the stamp. I’ve colored the leaves turquoise, then I’ve applied pink to the flowers with another paintbrush.

two color flower leaf fabric print tutorial

Print the stamp onto the fabric.

Paint your printed fabric

diy paint fabric print tutorial

Another method, if you want to add some color to your fabric print, is to paint the printed fabric.

4 thoughts on “How To Print Fabric With Indian Wood Block Stamps

  1. What brand of fabric paint are you using for this project? I have used Jacquard Textile paint but am interested to see what others work well.

  2. So very beautiful.
    I have some of these stamps and tried many times to use them and just cannot get it right. Thanks for this tutorial, I will try this technique.

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