Monday, February 2, 2009

Warp and weft : Indonesian Ikat

Posting first on a series on traditional weaves  from Asia.
Traditional textiles are among the most exciting and sought after categories of traditional art from around the region.
There is  much to offer- a profusion of techniques, fabrics,  raw materials, motifs, patterns and applications.
Most traditional weaves are durable, and lend themselves to excellent use around the modern home. Decorating with kaleidoscopic colours of  indigenous textiles rich in texture and imagery is rewarding not only for the visual appeal it generates, but for the fact that it helps sustain age old craft traditions and low-income rural economies.
Featured today are a few weaves from Indonesia. The archipelago's various people have age old weaving traditions. Most weaving is carried out by men and women at home using back-strap looms of varying complexity    

Among the noted weaves from different Indonesian islands are the Balinese Songket and Rangrang, West Timorese and Sumbanese Pahikung, West Timorese Buna and the exceptional Ikat. Ikat derives its name from the Malay word Meningkat which means to tie or bind. Originally introduced to the archipelago from India, by the British East India Company, the tradition dates back to 700 A.D.
It is a complex weave in which the warp and weft threads are dyed separately before each cloth is woven . The typical, blurry outlined patterns that distinguish the end product only begins to emerge when the individually dyed warp and weft threads are woven together. The skill behind the process lies in the ability to work out before hand where the dyed sections will intersect and what patterns they will create. In Tengenan, Bali, weavers  tie and dye the same pattern on both the warp and weft, a technique called double Ikat.

For the fact that they used very basic raw materials, like bark and fronds, Ikats from Indonesia         display ingenious creativity. 

Used traditionally to weave lengths of fabrics for a variety of uses-  royal and ceremonial regalia, sarongs and hinnggyi's and other items of clothing- Ikat has always been considered a powerful medium to tell stories, preserve memories, provide people with their indigenous identities and to work magic. In various parts of Indonesia, exceptionally woven pieces with intricate patterns were said to process magical powers and were used as talismans for luck and protection.

The weave is s replete with motifs like conch shells, birds, fishes, flowers, animal and human figures.  Expressive and very dramatic figures representing deamons and other mythological characters also abound.


Indonesian Ikat also comes in a veritable feast of colours, Sumbanese rusty reds and deep blues in bold patterns. In rainbow stripes from Timor and deep browns, oranges and navy blue from the islands of Alor, Flores and Savu.


Images top to bottom.
  • Cotton sarongs from Jepara, Java, Sumba motif.
  • Here, two sarongs have been opened up and joined in the middle to make a bedspread.
  • Cotton throw from Bali.
  • Silk sarong 
  • Silk Sarong, detail.
  • Cotton, sheet from Java, used as table cloth.
  •  Tapestry and runner in cotton and hemp, Bali.
For more images and information on ikat and other Indonesian textiles refer to the site below.


Shalini said...

Wonderful post and photos. I've always loved Ikat, but these are so much more complex and detailed than what I had seen earlier.

pRiyA said...

i'm always thrilled when you show us more glimpses of your lovely home.
for some strange reason, your new posts don't show up on my blog roll!

megha punater said...

beautiful post,i love ikat too.
your home looks great chandan and the ikat collection of yours is so precious.

Kayla coo said...

Beautiful textiles and the history and how they are made are so very interesting.
Thanks so much for your kind comment.
Michala x

Sagar said...

This is really interesting chandan, I love the colours and patterns on the cloth.

Chandan said...

Thanks Shalini, Priya, Megha, Kayla and Sagar !

TheKeyBunch said...

Very beautiful, and very informative. Thanks for sharing:)


Yoli said...

Just discovered your blog through an Indian Summer. I am so thrilled.

Arch at Rang said...

It's so lovely to learn such amazing things without moving from your chair:-))

I can see your love for these textiles...I love Ikat too but did not know about Indonesian version:-)

Oh, loving those glimpses from your home;-)


Dithi said...

I love Ikat and this was such a pleasure to read. Love your new profile pic as well!

Chandan said...

Sahron, Yoli, Archana and Dithi, Thanks a lot!.
Shalini, Arch, Ikat has in fact spread from India to the silk route too. Apparently, Uzbekistan has a strong ikat weaving tradition as well.

west by south said...

Thank you for the wonderful post and beautiful photos! I use to live in it brought back such wonderful memories!

Afrie @ said...

Wow. What a beautiful posting you have here.

Thank you for loving Indonesian Ikat...

Cetatzeanul said...

i would love to live in such a home. It's like heaven with a rooftop. Admirable


Anonymous said...

Indonesian Ikat that is so relaxing.

Laby[stacy adams suit]

Cung Trinh said...

cách chữa hôi miệng bằng phương pháp tự nhiênTrong cây tràm có tinh dầu, đây là thành phần có tác dụng sát khuẩn cao,
cách chữa trị bệnh hôi miệng hiệu quả nhanh nhấtNgoài ra, tinh dầu cây tràm sẽ mang đến cho bạn hơi thở thơm mát, dễ chịu
cách trị hôi miệng bằng mật ongĐể có được điều này, bạn chỉ cần dùng 2 hoặc 3 giọt tinh dầu cây tràm lên trên bàn chải đánh răng để đánh răng hằng ngày.
hôi miệng khi mang bầuThực hiện cách chữa trị bài thuốc nam như thế nào 1 tuần bạn sẽ vứt bỏ được mùi hôi khó chịu kia mãi mãi tránh xa.
hôi miệng khi mọc răng khônRau mùi tây được biết tới cái tên rau thơm không thể thiếu trong các bữa ăn hằng ngày
hôi miệng không chữa đượcTrong rau mùi tây có các thành phần có khả năng giúp miệng bạn trở nên thơm tho hơn.
hôi miệng là bị bệnh gìVới cách chữa trị đơn giản từ bài thuốc nam dân gian, bạn sẽ nhanh chóng xóa tan nỗi lo tự ti, mất tự tin khi giao tiếp
hôi miệng làm sao hếtBạn hãy cho lá rau mùi tây vào trong giấm ăn sau đó nhai rau trong 2 hoặc 3 phút cho rau được nghiền nát ra, thấm vào các chân răng.
trị hôi miệng bằng thiên nhiênHoặc có thể ép rau dùng nước để ngậm vào các buồi sáng trước khi đánh răng.
trị bệnh hôi miệng ở trẻ emDo các bệnh về răng miệng như viêm nướu răng, sâu răng, vô răng, các lỗ hổng sâu răng hay các bệnh như viêm amidan,
Một số cách chữa bệnh hôi miệng ở trẻ em cha mẹ nên biếtThường xuyên vệ sinh răng miệng sạch sẽ, không để các thức ăn thừa bám trên răng miệng


Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin