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 Post subject: Savu Sarong ? Material
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 7:34 am 
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Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 12:36 am
Posts: 5
Location: Holulaloa, HI
Aloha All,
I am new to the forum and appreciate all of the information that I have learned on my visits. I have obtained a few boxes of textiles from a man who sells Indonesian antiques (mostly wood) goods. I fell in love with the textiles and found them fascinating. Now I have a new addiction and am hungry for knowledge. Thru research and some e-mail discussions with some experts on the subject, I have found that most of the pieces are from Sumba and Savu, with a few from Flores and a couple of ??'s. I am looking to learn about them. I want to keep a few select pieces and trade some for others that I don't have, and sell some. Identifying them is difficult.
Anyway, I am attaching a couple pics of a textile that I think is from Savu. It is not one of the prettier pieces that I have but, I thought maybe you could help me with some questions. Is it Patola influence? Natural dyes? Now for the tricky part.... This textile has a much rougher texture than most of the Savu pieces that I have. I have 2 or 3 that have this texture. The others are softer. This sarong seems to be every bit as worn as the others, (if not more). Why would it have such a rough hand? Thank you again for all of your wonderful information. -Janet


Attachments:
File comment: Savu ikat
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File comment: Savu ikat detail
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File comment: Savu ikat detail
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 2:46 pm 
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Location: Canterbury, UK
The best reference that I can suggest for textiles from Savu is Genevieve Duggan's book: "Ikats of Savu: Women Weaving History in Eastern Indonesia" published by White Lotus Press as the first in their 'Studies of the Material Cultures of Southeast Asia Series ISBN 974-7534-67-3

It is very difficult to determine much from your photos which are very indistinct. However, the overal picture certainly does suggest a Savu sarong of the hubi iki with the 7 central stripes of motifs. I cannot now remember all the details of history and differentiating the 2 main families in Savu from the textiles but would need to go through the book I mention above in detail. I really would recommend that you try and lay hands on this book. It is based on Genevieve's PhD research into Savu textiles.

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:26 pm 
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Just a thought about the 'roughness'. This could well indicate that it is from thread hand-spun locally as such thread tends to have a more irregular texture. The others might be woven from machine twisted thread which has been bought in the market and then tied for the ikat and dyed. Such thread would be smoother and more regular than hand-spun thread.

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http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 5:54 pm 
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Location: Holulaloa, HI
Thank you Pamela,
I will purchase the book you suggested. Now that you say that, I took a closer look and can see the very consistant treads on the other Savu pieces. They have a consistant size and twist. The threads on these couple of pieces are definitely more irregular with small slubs. Another question...Do you know when commercial dyes were introduced? One of the other pieces has a very bright red and yellow accent treads even though the threads may be hand-spun.(?) Do you know when commercial yarns were introduced? Maybe with the Dutch? It's very hard to post pictures on the site with the small resolution. Difficult to see the yarns, etc.
Aloha!
Janet


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 14, 2008 9:07 pm 
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Janet

I would have to immerse myself in the book to answer the detail of your questions.

In some other places you find that chemical dyed bright yarns, often imported, have been used with natural dyes. Just a quick glance at page 2 refers to a 'west-east trading axis from Java to Timor' and a 'north-south commercial axis linking the spice islands of Ternate and Banda in the Moluccas to Timor, passing through the Solor strait'.

The main natural dyes are (page 31) 'indigo for the blue dye, of the genus Indigofera and Morinda (Morinda citrifolia and Morinda tomentosa) for the red dye. the less frequently used yellow colour is obtained from curcuma and fades quickly. Only a few plain warp threads are dyed with curcuma.'

Posting photos. Do you have image software which will 'save for web'? I use Photoshop and this, under file and then save will save for web at quite good visual resolution but small file size. If you want to email me some better images I can reduce and add or replace on your posts. You can email me via the email link to my posts.

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 1:37 am 
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Location: Holulaloa, HI
Dear Pamela,
Thank you, I will send you a couple of pictures.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 8:05 am 
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I have replaced the two original images in the first post on this thread with new ones from images that Janet sent me and also added in a third detail shot which she sent me. For good measure I am also posting below a couple of details I made of some of the motifs in the design. I think that these give an idea of the lovely 'patina' - as we would say of a basket - that this old textile has. It looks to be a very nice textile indeed and I love the subtle shades. For me definitely one to be kept in the collection and not traded on!


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File comment: detail of motifs
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File comment: detail of motifs
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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 15, 2008 9:08 pm 
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Thank you!!!!
I'm so glad that I spoke (emailed) you. This is one that I WAS thinking was not very collectible. Hence, asking questions is the best way to learn. I have a few of these, some of which are a combination of this "rough" handspun yarn and other softer yarn. Unfortunately, I was ignorant that I have one of these pieces that are "mixed yarn" on ebay. OOOOPPS! It is a really pretty piece. Live and learn.....
Aloha!
Janet


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 16, 2008 8:58 am 
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Janet,

Glad that we could be of assistance. I think that when you get your copy of 'Ikats of Savu' you will appreciate it even more. It has clearly been well worn and the indigo has paled from use and also the morinda I think. Reading about the social organisation of the people of Savu is fascinating and how traditional sarongs indicate the matrilineal group to which a woman belongs is interesting. As I said above, I think this one is from the hubi iki or lesser blossom (hubi means blossom). The two matrifocal groups are hubi ae, the greater blossom, and hubi iki, the lesser blossom. These two progenitrix lines start with two sisters Muji Babo and Lou Babo. The hubi have also formed into sub-groups over time known as wini (seeds). I base my suggestion that your textile is from hubi iki because I think that it has 4 dark stripes up to the join in the centre of the sarong (that goes around the sarong horizontally as worn). This gives 7 overall middle stripes of dark colour when the two central stripes are joined into one. The major motif in the wide morinda stripe also looks similar (but not quite exactly) like some of the hubi iki motifs shown in the book.

This sarong certainly looks to be a traditional one. Christianised families do not now wear sarongs following the exact traditions but ones which may be loosely in the general style. It would be interesting to see if you can identify the hubi of any of the other similar Savu sarongs which you have.

Enjoy your textiles and exploring them further with the help of the book - for many of us collectors the most exciting part of collecting textiles!

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Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 3:15 am 
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Joined: Tue May 09, 2006 9:47 am
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Location: Bali Indonesia
You might be interested to see a cloth related to this one, online at:

http://www.macan-tidur-textiles.com/content/view/46/64/

(Look at the thumbnails on the bottom of the page and click the one that's similar.)

You may appreciate seeing the photo on the left side of the page, showing how cloths like this are worn. Even today, and with great panache!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Apr 24, 2008 10:26 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 13, 2008 12:36 am
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Location: Holulaloa, HI
Thank you Susan, I did look at the site and indeed, the ei worapi on the site is similar, also, kisar is similar to some. Also, I bought the book you suggested. NOW THE HARD PART! I have 11 of these sarongs and I have to decide which ones to keep. It's a good problem!
Aloha,
Janet


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