The Ikkat is one of the oldest forms of textile decoration. Though it derives its name from an Indonesian word, the technique is said to have independently come up all over the world. The Ikkat may be broadly classified in 3 forms:
- Warp Ikkat
- Weft Ikkat
- Double Ikkat
Since the design is formed by tie & dye it is theoretically possible to have a design of any scale, or complexity with any number of colours as required in an Ikkat.
The Ikkats in India are mostly woven in 3 handloom clusters. Pathan and Rajkot (Ikkat is colloquially referred to as Patola) in Gujarat. Sambalpur and Sonepur in Orissa and Pochampalli and Puttapakam in Andhra.