About this object

History of use

Weaving in Tibet is traditionally the occupation of women. Closely woven work, such as this piece, are famous for durability, and are much prized. Woven on loin looms with a narrow warp. The fabric is used to make women's aprons and skirts. 13 widths of fabric sewn together make the traditional blankets of southern Tibet. An apron is an everyday feature of women's dress and may be worn on either the front or the back. It is worn around the waist over a long black dress (baku), partly helping to secure the skirt. The fabric can be purchased in the market in an endless variety of colours and patterns, sold as it comes off the loom, ready to be cut into 3 lengths and sewn into an apron. These are usually backed with mill cloth. Apron pieces are always sewn together so that the stripes of the centre panel are offset.

Cultural context

for clothing

Physical description

Tightly woven cotton (?) textile with width-wise stripes in multi-colours of green, blue, purple, grey and maroon, along with black and white, are of varying degrees of thinness.