Antique batik fabric has extraordinary historical value. A family may pass down batik from one generation to another because the batik itself may carry certain moral values or could also be a symbol of a family’s social status. Some of us may find discover batik fabric in our parents’ or grandparents’ closet. One day, their batik collection may become ours.
Love of batik does not mean merely purchasing or owning a piece of batik clothing or fabric. The love of timeless treasures batik fabric could also be portrayed through how we take care of it. Real batik cannot be washed the same way you would wash clothing or fabric made from cotton or wool. Special care is needed in order to preserve the quality of the batik and avoid its color from fading, especially for antique batik fabric or clothing.
How to Wash Batik
- Fill a medium sized bucket/ basin with warm water for soaking the batik.
- You can use shampoo as the detergent or detergent specially made for washing batik. Mix the detergent in the water until it completely dissolves.
- Soak the antique batik fabric for approximately 30 minutes, and then let it rest.
- Prepare 3 buckets/basins of clean cold water to rinse the batik.
- After you finish soaking the batik, gently remove it from the water filled with detergent and repeatedly dip the batik in the bucket/basin filled with cold water up to 5 – 6 times.
- Continue to rinse the batik until it is clean from one bucket/basin to another. Continue to do so until the water in the bucket/basin is completely clean without any residual suds.
How to Dry and Iron Batik
- Stretch out a towel on the floor or table and place the antique batik fabric on top of the towel. Then, roll the towel with the batik fabric inside. Let the towel absorb the leftover water in the batik.
- When the batik is no longer wet and has become damp, hang the batik fabric on a PVC pipe that has been covered with cloth or a towel. Avoid direct sunlight when drying the batik. The best time to dry batik fabric is at night time. If you leave it out to dry the whole night, the batik fabric will be dry by the morning.
- After the batik is dry, place the batik on an ironing board. Then, place a layer of fabric made from cotton on top of the batik before you start ironing the batik fabric. Use medium to high heat when ironing the batik fabric and do not place the iron directly on the batik fabric.
How to Store Batik
- Do not fold old or antique batik fabric and store it in the closet. Also, do not wrap or keep batik in plastic. The right way to store batik is by hanging the batik fabric using hangers that have clips.
- Fold the batik in half according to the length of the hanger. Make sure the hanger also has foam hanger covers on the area where you would clip your batik.
- In order to keep moths away from your timeless treasures batik fabric, coarsely ground some white pepper and scatter it around the area where you hang your batik fabric.