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How to make Adinkra Cloth


There are two methods the Ashantis use in printing the Adinkra symbols on cloth; the block-stamp technique, and the screen-printing. 

The Adinkra cloth was originally printed from hand carverd stamps from calabash or gourd. The dye or ink for printing is derived from the bark of the Badie tree and the roots of the kuntunkuni tree. 

The bark and roots are soaked in water for days to soften. They are then pounded to increase the softening process.

The stamps used are carved from calabash which are tinted with dye, then pressed according to a desired pattern on plain cotton cloth, pegged on the ground. 

(Today the cloth is printed on raised platforms covered with sack covering acting as the printing table).

Photo: insert shows block printing.


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