Batik Design Activity

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Updated on Aug 27, 2013

Batik is a traditional Indonesian craft, which uses a technique of drawing wax on fabric to create patterns before dying. Your child can use glue instead of wax, and a sheet of paper as fabric for this fun project.

What You Need:

  • Sketch paper and pencil
  • White paper
  • Glue
  • Watercolor paints

What You Do:

  1. Invite your child to look at examples of batik artwork online or at your local library. Batik is an ancient art form where cloth is drawn on with a tool called a canting, which is a thin container, like a pen, filled with melted wax. Then, the fabric is dyed, traditionally with brown or blue dye.
  2. Your child can create a sketch for his batik design before beginning to work on his paper. Traditional designs use nature as influence, such as flowers or birds, alongside geometric patterns and lines.
  3. Now he can replicate that sketch onto a fresh sheet of white paper, using a glue bottle as a canting. Encourage him to take his time and focus on his design, honing his fine motor skills and attention to detail.
  4. After the glue has dried, he can get out his watercolor paints and paint between the lines of glue using either blue or brown.
  5. Once his batik creation is finished, he can hang it on his wall for others to see!

Did You Know: Some nobility, such as the Royal Javanese Family on the island of Java, only wear certain patterns of batik fabric. Some batik cloth is even dusted with gold for ceremonies!

Sarah Lipoff has a K-12 Art Education degree and enjoys working with kids of all ages.