There are several stages in the process the hand-drawn Batik including several sub-processes of waxing dyeing and dewaxing (removing the wax) and preparing the cloth, tracing the designs, stretching the cloth on a frame, waxing the area of the cloth that does not need dyeing, preparing the dye, dipping the cloth in dye, boiling the cloth to remove the wax and washing the cloth. The characteristic effects of the Batik are the fine cracks that appear in the wax which allow very small amounts of the dye to seep in. It is a feature not possible in any other form of printing. It is very important to achieve the right type of cracks or hairline detail.
The tool that is used to produce the intricate Batik designs is called the Canting [cha:nting], and it was originally invented by the Javanese. It is a small copper container with a thin spout connected to a short bamboo handle. The copper container is filled with melted wax and the artisan then uses the canting to draw the design on the cloth. The Canting has different sizes of spouts, which are numbered to correspond to the size, to achieve varied design effects. Dots and parallel lines may be drawn with a canting.
In order to be able to bear the heat and wax, the cloth used to make batik is usually strong material such as cambric, poplin, voiles and pure silk. The artists usually avoid using synthetic fabrics. High fashion designs drawn on silk are very popular nowadays and these exceptionally high-quality pieces can take months to create and as a result are quite costly.