Wearing Cloth

Wearing Cloth


Tabby weave; silk brocaded with silk and metallic threads

Overall: 203.2 x 94.6 cm (80 x 37 1/4 in.)

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Frank E. Brown 1955.307



The small pattern of rosettes in the main field, the selvage borders, and the tumpal (triangle) border are characteristic of the gold, silver, and red silk cloths woven in the Palembang region. Sumptuous silks of this type were only made in the eastern coastal cities of Sumatra that maintained active trade with China and India. Not only were the silk, gold, and silver threads imported, but the elements of the design were derived from Indian patola (warp and weft ikat) silks. Traditionally, cloths like this were worn for ceremonial occasions and were also used in the exchange of gifts required on the occasion of a wedding.

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