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GLOBAL EXPRESSIONS: DECORATING WITH FABRICS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

In some cases, the art of making them is becoming lost as keepers of the craft die out. The history of how they each came to be is fascinating. Here are ten that will make you fall in love with the exotic lands from whence they come. Textiles travel well and as a result, made for good trading currency in the past.

But over time they can disintegrate or become unrecognizable. We do know that many Asian countries employ similar techniques. The word ikat itself is Indonesian, and came to Europe through the Dutch. In Cambodia, the fabric was considered one of the finest textiles in the world. In danger of disappearing during the Khmer Rouge regime, ikat in Cambodia survived because Kikuo Morimoto, a Japanese textile expert, rode through the war-torn country going from village to village looking for artisans who still knew the craft.

Ikat is not just a print or pattern, but also a complicated dyeing technique. Then it is woven with an intentional bleed and blurry lines. Double ikat is a process where both directional weave elements of the yard, the warp lengthwise and the weft horizontal are prepared with this technique. Tenganan in Bali, Indonesia, is one of just three places in the world still producing double ikat.

In Tenganga, the yarn is dyed with natural materials such as papaya leaf, candle nut, and turmeric. The yarn is soaked for three nights in the pigmented mixture and then hung out to dry for six weeks.

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A turmeric-stained product, creating a yellow yarn, becomes the base color. The finished yarn is wrapped into wooden frames, grouped, and tied to prepare it for the next stage of dyeing. The second color to be applied usually takes two weeks, dyeing and drying several times until the desired intensity is achieved. The third layer can take upwards of 12 dippings over three months. Once the dyeing is completed, the ties are removed showing the complex coloration achieved by this lengthy process. Creating ikat is definitely not for the faint hearted!

Ikat artisans have mad skill and years of practice. Made from the inner bark of the paper mulberry tree, Tapa Cloth comes from the South Pacific and found its way into Southeast Asia through migration. It is made by stripping the bark away from a three-inch diameter stalk of the tree. Then it is soaked in water, and pounded with a traditional mallet. When the fibrous mixture is thin and even, the sheets are glued together using arrowroot or tapioca. Natural dyes are then rubbed over stenciled patterns to transfer the designs. When the dyes are dry, artisans go over the patterns with a brush, accentuating the patterns.

These days, tapa cloth is worn on formal occasions such as weddings, or in Tongan culture, specific times when the wearer wants to show respect.

Traditional Dress Around The World | Traditional Clothing Around The World | Rough Guides

Yuzen is said to have originated in the late 17th century. The traditional dress of the Herero women in Namibia is an adaptation of Victorian dress, as worn by the German colonists they fought in a bloody conflict at the start of the twentieth century, and now retained as a proud part of Herero identity.

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The silhouette is distinctive: a full, floor-length skirt, fitted bodice with puffed sleeve, with a magnificent horn-shaped hat, the shape of cattle horns, completing the look. The simple bright colours of blue, red, yellow and green always feature and reindeer skin and fur is used for belts, boots and gloves. For men this means the gho, a knee-length gown tied at the waist by a belt called a keram.

Global Expressions: Decorating With Fabrics from Around the World

For the women, traditional dress is typically an ankle-length dress called a kira , and the equivalent scarf is called a rachus. Think bowler hats and the first person who springs to mind is an English city gent — Mr Banks from Mary Poppins perhaps.

Planning a trip to Bolivia? During the festival each of the tribes of the Nagaland show their finery, each tribe having its own magnificent style, and with a spectacular range of headdresses on display, incorporating feathers, cane, dyed goat fur and boar tusks. The region is also known for its crafts and weaving, including beautiful Naga shawls.

Vietnam is home to an extraordinary wealth of clothing traditions, with the most elaborate outfits found in the north, such as red brocades of the Flower Hmong people and the decorated headdresses of the Red Dao. However, the most recognisably Vietnamese item is the conical hat, or non la , an essential accessory throughout the country. Planning a trip to Vietnam?

Traje de flamenco or traje de gitana are the flamboyant dresses that finish in a cascade of ruffles volantes , which are synonymous with the flamenco dancers of southern Spain. However, the ultimate flamenco dress is the bata de cola, the long-tailed version worn for the style of dance of the same name, an intricate and beautiful dance where the dancer controls the tail so that it swishes and flicks as if it has a life of its own.


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John B. Planning a trip to the US? Though each village has its own style, there are common features — a veil, bonnet or shawl, long pleated skirts and richly embroidered blouses. Some of the most spectacular are from the province of Nuoro. Those who are not guided by trends, but execute understated designs which are not only captivating but sensitive to the human experience.

My favourite piece of furniture is the Knoll Studio Stump Table. Adelaide Bragg and Associates was established in by Adelaide Bragg. Adelaide is known for her beautiful classic interiors and provides bespoke interiors to private homes across Australia and to leading clubs and commercial premises. Colour, layering and the use of beautiful table lights.

The English decorating houses, for example Colefax and Fowler, who have always used porcelain and ceramics as lamp bases. I have a galah called Holly and a dog called Flossy.

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Established in , Brownlow Interior Design, specialises in residential, commercial and marine projects across Australia. Barb Brownlow is recognised for her classic, decorative style, with an extensive knowledge of early English and continental furniture, materials and textiles. Following a rigorous approach to planning and detail, Brownlow Interior Design create comfortable, classic interiors with a finely balanced layering of materials, finishes, furniture, antiques and artwork, which provide an exceptional point of difference.

With a flagship retail store, located in Toorak Victoria, Brownlow Interior Design stock a unique and interesting collection of local and imported textiles, lighting, rugs, furniture, soft furnishings, art and interior accessories. The Far East! We are mad about chinoiserie and its adaption for interior decoration.


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  • We are most at home in a worn pair of R. Established in , Camilla Molders Design is a boutique design studio focused on creating residential interior spaces that surprise and delight, that push design boundaries, all while balancing functionality with aesthetics.

    In pictures: traditional dress around the world

    We focus on fine detailing and exceptional craftsmanship, often collaborating with artisans and craftspeople to create original bespoke pieces, that are a perfect accompaniment to our projects. Visual balance is always an absolute must. Balance provides a sense of unity and order, and stability to a design. Lately I'm greatly inspired by cymatic shapes — which are the shapes that sound waves make.

    I'm using these patterns on rug and textile designs and the end results are beautiful and interesting.