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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2015 8:51 pm 
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Location: Santa Cruz Bolivia
A contact showed me this picture of bands that are said to have been collected from North Sumatra in the Lake Toba area about 20 years ago. Does anyone have bands like these in their collections? I would really like to see a close-up of both faces of some examples so that I can determine the structure. I can't get a good look at the low res image that I have and only one face is shown. Any pictures of these being woven would be very nuch appreciated too.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 10:48 am 
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Hi Laverne

These bands look very like the twining on at the end of a Toba Batak ragi hotung. I haven't seen them as separate bands before. Sandra Niessen in her section 8.3. Weft twining, page 522 in 'Legacy in cloth: Batak textiles of Indonesia' refers to twined bags which Batak men used slung over their shoulder as "among the finest examples of Batak twinings but they are rare and no longer made." I haven't, so far, found any reference to separate twined bands. Sandra currently does not have good internet access but perhaps we can get some further information from her in the future.

There are some images of ragi hotang twined sirat in this thread which I originally put together for you.

Best,

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 12:55 pm 
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Thank you so much, Pamela. Thank you for the reminder of the page that you put together for me. I did manage to get a picture from Jane showing two faces of one band. The weft is quite heavy and looks like it is a purple synthetic yarn. Unfortunately, the shots are again very low res.

Jane contacted me via my blog and sent me a link to a video (URL below) she made in her husband's village in Sumatra showing a band being woven. I can't tell if the warp threads are being twisted as the pattern sticks are inserted. My first guess was that it was basic complementary-warp pick-up creating two and three-span warp floats but I made a quick attempt to chart one of the patterns and found that some of the warp floats would be too long and concluded that there must be twisting/twining.

She says that...'' This type of weaving in Sumatra is used as an edge decoration for a much larger piece.'' It would seem that the bands are sewn to the edges? Perhaps they are not being created by twining around the large pieces' warp-ends anymore? Sandra's book most likely has the answers and I shall go and look.

The video is wonderful and I have already replied to Jane to see if I can go visit! I will be in Australia this June and would like to take that opportunity to go to Indonesia.

VIDEO URL....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VDfup4JIJA

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 1:33 pm 
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Hi Laverne

Very many thanks for the video link. I have managed to get it embedded into this post (at least I can see it; hope others can too!)

The twining sirat is not usually sewn to the textile edge (top/bottom of warp) but, as Sandra says (page 522) 'twining makes use of a passive warp'. There are some photos on page 532 from c. 1914-1919 and 1986. I will see about posting them here. (I don't think that Sandra will mind. If she does they may disappear rather quickly!) There does not seem to be a 'loom' set up as in the video.



One of Sandra's Batak 'daughters' is a twiner. It would be good if she could comment. I think she might need some help with the English but I will see if I can put a link in a Facebook message to her.

Beaded edgings (as an alternative to twined edgings) can also be added to the warp. There are a couple of interesting photos on page 530 showing this and the threads with beads on them look a bit like the 'loom' in the video. Again, I will see if I can post the photos. There is an interesting comment: "The technique[beaded edging, sirat simata in Toba Batak] has much in common with weft twining because the warp threads are inserted between paired strands of weft. Just as the twist in the weft while twining, the bead acts like a node that keeps the two weft yarns paired with the warp yarn between them." The sticks being inserted in the video would, I presume, be the warp threads of the whole cloth of the weaving?

I will see about sourcing the photos.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 2:03 pm 
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Sandra describes the process of applying weft twining directly to the finished cloth around the static warp ends and I am familiar with this because this is the what the Montagnard weavers with whom I worked do. The tools they use and the technique they employ, however, are very different. It's so interesting and I love their use of toothbrush handles as one of the tools. I would love to see a video of that.

But, what I am wondering about is the use of these independently woven bands...the one in the video in progress and the sample that the woman is examining, which is an independent band, as well as the ones that Jane collected 20 years ago. Jane told me that they are used as edgings.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:30 pm 
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I have been thinking about these independently woven bands as opposed to the twined bands that are worked directly onto the edge of woven cloth and am now wondering if they are perhaps made and kept as pattern references so that they can be referred to as the weaver twines a design along the edge of the woven cloth.

I have had weaving teachers here in Bolivia and in Ecuador who have showed me their pattern samples. In Bolivia my teachers called them ''sakas''. They are made in heavy wool and each one is a small square with a single motif. If the weaver has forgotten the pick-up for a particular pattern, she works a needle into the saka alongside the weft and from there she can read which threads need to be picked and dropped for a particular shot of weft.

Weavers I worked with in coastal Ecuador also have narrow strips of cloth with the various patterns that they are able to weave into their saddlebags and they use those to help them remember which threads to pick up and place into the many heddles that they use.

Maybe these bands are made as a kind of pattern catalog.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:47 pm 
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I will see if I can get any elucidation out of N. Sumatra.

For the benefit of others who may not have Sandra's book 'Legacy in cloth' (and because it makes the thread read more helpfully - I hope) here are some of the images I talked about about above.

The first four black and white images are from page 523 of 'Legacy' and relate to weft twining edging.
The second two colour images are from page 530 and relate to working a beadwork with weft twining edging.


Attachments:
File comment: fig. Tech 8.11 Karo man twining a textile edge. c. 1914 – 1919. Photograph Tassilo Adam. Photoarchives kit 1001 4418. A line appears to be running from the upright post to the twiner. Its
function is not clear. Beside the twiner (sitting) there is a standing man who is using the drop spindle. He could be demonstrating for the photographer how twining weft is plied.

Tech-8.11.jpg
Tech-8.11.jpg [ 34.64 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]
File comment: fig. Tech 8.13 A male twiner. Nainggolan, Samosir. 1980. In the past, twining was often the work of men.
Tech-8.13.jpg
Tech-8.13.jpg [ 43.61 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]
File comment: fig. Tech 8.12 Twining the edge of a sadum Cat 7.5. Sait ni Huta. 1986. The two strands of weft, separated by a reed, are the active element in this technical procedure.
Tech-8.12.jpg
Tech-8.12.jpg [ 23.57 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]
File comment: fig. Tech 8.14 Nai Ati, boru Munthe, twining a finished textile. Silalahi, Si Tolu Huta. 1986.
Tech-8.14.jpg
Tech-8.14.jpg [ 32.25 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]
File comment: figs Tech 8.25a and b The weaver makes openings in the beaded weft using her reed-like wedge of wood to insert the fringes, one at a time. Sait ni Huta. 1986.
Tech-8aw.jpg
Tech-8aw.jpg [ 87.06 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]
File comment: figs Tech 8.25a and b The weaver makes openings in the beaded weft using her reed-like wedge of wood to insert the fringes, one at a time. Sait ni Huta. 1986.
Tech-8bw.jpg
Tech-8bw.jpg [ 92.21 KiB | Viewed 8058 times ]

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:58 pm 
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also see Sandra's blog from June 2010
http://bataktextiles.blogspot.co.uk/201 ... tened.html which includes this image:

Image

You might like to read a later, July 2010, blog relating feedback on Legacy and twining from a group of weavers in Sait ni Huta http://bataktextiles.blogspot.co.uk/201 ... -look.html

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 20, 2015 4:31 pm 
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Dear Laverne and Pamela, I am now home from North Sumatra. I had terrible problems with internet there and I just couldn't afford the hours that it would take to go onto the forum. I am glad, now, to return to this post and share a few of my thoughts.
Pamela has shown pictures of the traditional twining technique that I discussed in Legacy in cloth. This, indeed, entails a passive warp and an active two-strand weft that is wound around and around the warp strands.

I was fortunate during my last journey to be able to witness the technique that is shown in the video that Laverne shared above (thank you, Laverne!). (I didn't realize that Laverne had posted this video and I made my own but see now that it is unnecessary to post mine.) This is a relatively new technique. I do not know where it originates (wish I did). It has been around for awhile, but I only just became witness to it during this past trip to North Sumatra.

What is interesting here is that while Laverne has posted bands that are 'stand alone' as it were, the video shows the insertion of textile fringes as weft. In this way the band is being integrally attached to the woven textile (it is not sewn on). The stand-alone bands are woven with a separate weft instead of the using the fringes of the textile as weft. If the weft in the video appears "thick", it is because the fringes comprise 6 or more warp ends twisted together.

As Pamela notes, a kind of loom is being used to make these modern bands. In the original twining technique, the weft is wound around the warp (fringe ends) of the textile and a loom is not used. In this modern technique, the warp/fringe of the textile becomes the weft of the band. What serves as an 'active weft' in the original technique becomes a warp in the modern technique. Quite fun to see this transition/transformation. Ah, the innovative, creative wonders that one witnesses when comparing textile techniques!

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