Batik Techniques: Rozome/Roketsuzome Technique

Roketsuzome (ろうけつ染め/ろうけつぞめ) or Rozome (ろうぞめ), as it is more commonly known, is a form of dye resist technique in Japan. Though similar to batik, in the sense that they both make use of wax as the medium of dye resist, they differ in the sense of tools and textural effects produced. Roketsuzome basically means ro/ろう (wax), ketsu/けつ (resist or block out) and zome/ぞめ (dye).

Rozome was known as Rokechi, a method of stamping wax on fabric back in the 7th and 8th century. However it became unpopular and passion for this art was only revived in the early 17th century as a stencil-and-dye art. In the 20th century, passion for Rozome was reawakened with access to local and imported wax.

Instead of using the tjanting/canting, this method utilizes a variety of brushes to produce the finished design. Some of the brushes include Rofude (used to paint the hot wax onto the cloth), Surikomi (for blending colour), Irosashi (for fine details), Jizome or Hikizome brush (a big flat brush and for background work). Usually the brushes are made of tightly packed badger hair. Brushes give more control to the artist; therefore gradations can be done, unlike the layered application of colour in batik. This offers a more handmade look to the piece and gives it a sense of refinement. Other ways of producing Rozome cloth would be printing them with rollers and using stencils.



Irosashi brush

Rofude brush


Surikomi brushes









How is this technique done?



1. The wax is melted.

2. The wax is painted in accordance to the design. Different layers of wax are applied to create different shades (this is called the han bosen technique) when the cloth is dipped in the dye.

3. The finished product dipped in purple dye.














Samples from our gallery that uses this technique



                                                                                                                             “Fishermen” by Dolah

    “Market” by Dolah



About The Author


Leave a Reply