Ikat Weaving in Tenganan, Bali – Capucine

Yesterday we went to a village called Tenganan and we met a nice lady called Arini who taught us how she makes beautiful double Ikats.
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To weave an Ikat, you first need to get cotton to make lots of threads for the fabric. You wrap the strings of cotton on a frame and you separate the fabric in different bundles using a yellow plastic string.
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Then you try to make different patterns on the threads by attaching yellow strings very tight along each bundle so when you dye the fabric later the yellow string stops the colour from going in where it has been tied.
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You then put the colour all over the threads of fabric (you use macadamia nut for yellow, root bark for red and indigo plant for indigo) and then let it dry in the sun on a wooden stand.
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Then it’s the weaving. There are lots of raws of threads going up and down and it is called the wrap and you put another thread under and over it going left and right and that is called the weft and when you pull both strings together it makes a fabric.
(I found the two images above online)
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Because the threads have already a pattern in them it creates a lovely shape all over the fabric when it is weaved and that is what is called an Ikat.
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In tenganan the Ikat fabrics are very rare and difficult because they are double Ikats which means that the pattern is in the wrap threads but also in the weft threads and they are worn for ceremonies.
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(image from Now Bali)
I liked learning about Ikats so when I am older, I know how to do it and I can make my own wedding dress from it.
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Love, Capucine

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