Chikankari is an ancient form of white floral embroidery, intricately worked with needle and raw thread on a variety of fabrics like cotton, muslin, silk, organza etc. After completion of process the article is checked carefully since most defects can be detected at first glance. However, the finer flaws surface only after washing. A little bit of ‘tezaab’ is added to water and the embroidered garment is soaked in water for five minutes. This removes the ‘neel’ or the blue color of the print. The next step is to bleach the fabric. Rubber gloves are worn during this process. Garments are soaked overnight in a mix of castic soda, bleach, ‘ghadi’ powder and ‘ghadi’ soap overnight and washed with water the following day. About sixty thousand garments are washed daily at this dhobi ghat. After this, the garment is starched and let to dry in the sun. Once dry, these are ironed and packed!
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