Woman’ s mantle Baknough 0385

Woman's mantle Baknough. Berber people. Matmata area (Southern Tunisia). Wool, cotton, traditional indigo dye.Tie-dye technique. Early 20th. century. Very good condition. Dimension cm. 110 x 220 (43" x 86").
Indigo dyed after woven.The cotton fiber absorbed a much lighter coloration.
The Baknough is a rectangular fabric, usually 1.0 meter wide by 2.0 meters long. It is placed on the head and falls to the middle of the thigh. This shawl, wich is woven from remarkably finespun white wool, black wool and white cotton is dyed red, dark blue or (sometimes)black after weaving. In the past, a young girl wore a white Baknough, a young woman wore red, and an old woman draped a blue shawl over her head. The garnment was worn in winter and for festive events and visits. The motifs of the Baknough have names like combs, snakes, jewels, tattoos, scorpions, and beans and are composed of points, stripes, zigzags, diamonds, chevrons, and triangles. Similar motifs are used throughout the entire region, but the arrangement and distribution of motifs varies from town to town. The central field can be plain, decorated with an isolated motif, or adorned by a broad band filled with motifs. The four borders are usually decorated.
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