OLD ORIENTAL CARPET

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BAGS AND ARTIFACTS 3

Many artifacts are woven for use in tents, huts and dwellings. Among the most numerous are rectangular weavings which are folded in half and stitched and then become cushions and pillows. A small opening is left on a long side sufficient for various fillings to be inserted by hand. Bags of all sizes range from the tiny which contain precious items of jewellery, spices or dried fruit to the huge which are filled with grain.

Saddle bags for transport of goods by horse or donkey are common.

Finely woven bags are still made as dowry pieces.

Many items of clothing are woven for both every day, ceremonies and special occasions.

Please send any questions or enquiries to me at ldrowcroft@gmail.com

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS BERBER CARPET. Prepare for a surprise! Although this looks like a carpet, and can serve as one, it is a giant storage bag. At one end the tying loops are an integral part of the end finish and at the other there is a row of corresponding slits through which the loops will go once the carpet is folded in two. In the small interiors of Berber huts and tents multi-purpose items are often made. When folded and secured as a giant tent bag it would be used for storage of grain or filled with other weavings and serve as a bed at night and a divan for day time seating. This rare piece is from the Ait Bou Ichaoen Berbers in the extreme eastern end of the High Atlas Mountains. A carpet with a similar weave and almost identical colours is shown in `Maroc - Tapis du Tribus` in the section of pages 87 to 96. Ref. 2188. Size (opened) 239 x 150 cms, 7ft 10ins x 5ft. Euros 860.

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS BERBER CARPET. Prepare for a surprise! Although this looks like a carpet, and can serve as one, it is a giant storage bag. At one end the tying loops are an integral part of the end finish and at the other there is a row of corresponding slits through which the loops will go once the carpet is folded in two. In the small interiors of Berber huts and tents multi-purpose items are often made. When folded and secured as a giant tent bag it would be used for storage of grain or filled with other weavings and serve as a bed at night and a divan for day time seating. This rare piece is from the Ait Bou Ichaoen Berbers in the extreme eastern end of the High Atlas Mountains. A carpet with a similar weave and almost identical colours is shown in `Maroc - Tapis du Tribus` in the section of pages 87 to 96. Ref. 2188. Size (opened) 239 x 150 cms, 7ft 10ins x 5ft. FOLDED OVER AND SECURED FOR USE AS A STORAGE BAG.

KURDISH SINGLE TENT BAG. A rare semi-antique example from the Quchan Kurds of north east Persia. They inhabit the land between Meshed and the border with Turkmenistan. The excellent text book "Kordi" by Wilfried Stanzer gives exhaustive information on their rugs, kilim and artifacts. An extremely finely woven example, which was probably a dowry piece and subsequently used to store jewellery, complete with original back. Reference 286. Size 45 x 47cms, 1ft 6ins x 1ft 7ins, Euros 350.

KURDISH SINGLE TENT BAG. A rare semi-antique example from the Quchan Kurds of north east Persia. They inhabit the land between Meshed and the border with Turkmenistan. The excellent text book "Kordi" by Wilfried Stanzer gives exhaustive information on their rugs, kilim and artifacts. An extremely finely woven example, which was probably a dowry piece and subsequently used to store jewellery, complete with original back. Reference 286. Size 45 x 47cms, 1ft 6ins x 1ft 7ins. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER CEREMONIAL DRESS which originates from the Middle Atlas. The dress is in two separate parts - the inner part is a very fine yellow cotton tunic which is edged by hand in a narrow intricate brocade. The outer dress is fine chiffon also edged by hand using floral forms containing small white beads and fine gold coloured wire culminating in rosettes for fastening. The top dress has been left open from below the arms on both sides so that the yellow tunic may be seen. It is a very, very elegant garment. Sizes, length from collar to hem 147 cms., or 50 ins., width across shoulders 46 cms., or 18 ins. and length of top coat sleeves 58 cms., or 23 ins. Euros 175. Reference 2020.

CLOSE UP of fine embroidered edging and beadwork.

PERSIAN LURI HORSE COVER. A very primitive and rural piece which is made up of three panels of undyed goat hair kilim panels, joined together and then having the designs of repeated flower heads added by knotted pile. The goat hair foundation is most unusual as is the addition of pieces of material along the top edge. The pieces appear to have been shredded from no longer worn colorful dresses. I can find nothing similar in the rug literature and the origin is bsed on the knotting (symetrical) and the shades of henna, indigo and magenta/purple which are the same found in several Luri rugs. An interesting piece for a collector. Reference 2827. Size 119 x 153 cms., or 4ft x 5ft. Euros 135.

PERSIAN LURI HORSE COVER. A very primitive and rural piece which is made up of three panels of undyed goat hair kilim panels, joined together and then having the designs of repeated flower heads added by knotted pile. The goat hair foundation is most unusual as is the addition of pieces of material along the top edge. The pieces appear to have been shredded from no longer worn colorful dresses. I can find nothing similar in the rug literature and the origin is bsed on the knotting (symetrical) and the shades of henna, indigo and magenta/purple which are the same found in several Luri rugs. An interesting piece for a collector. Reference 2827. Size 119 x 153 cms., or 4ft x 5ft. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER SHAWL. Berber women traditionally wear these as shawls or head scarves. The long tassels are made from the same material and embellished with many sequins. This piece is backed with heavy terracotta coloured cotton and will make a fascinating wall hanging. Reference 2320. Size 104 x 87cms. 3ft.5in. x 2ft.10in. excluding tassels. Euros 50.

MOROCCAN BERBER SHAWL. Berber women traditionally wear these as shawls or head scarves. The long tassels are made from the same material and embellished with many sequins. This piece is backed with heavy terracotta coloured cotton and will make a fascinating wall hanging. Reference 2320. Size 104 x 87cms. 3ft.5in. x 2ft.10in. excluding tassels. BERBER GIRL FROM THE MIDDLE ATLAS.

RASHESTHAN CEREMONIAL TEXTILE which is a large embroidered hanging used as a wall, door or shrine hanging for ceremonial occasions. It is called a "Toran". Peacocks, elephants and an iterpretation of the Goddess Lashkai depict fertlity & happiness, prosperity and wealth respectively. The piece is woven in two halves, joined in the center. On the right hand section there are two inscriptions and on the left there are some unfinished sections which suggest that there was a deadline for finishing, (not met). The original hanging loops are in place and the condition excellent. Please see "Embroidery from India and Pakistan" pages 40 to 43. There is a good selection of Torans illustrated in "Traditional Indian Textiles", pages 76 to 78. Reference 2807. Size 340 x 43 cms., or 11ft 2ins. x 1ft. 5ins. Euros 175.

CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER CUSHION / BAG. The square shape is unusual. The piece was woven originally as one long flat weave or kilim before being folded and stitched with an opening left along one side sufficient for it to be filled. The lattice designs are composed of cottons of many different shades and the work is extremely fine. It originates from the Berbers of Zemmour in the northern part of the Middle Atlas and I found it in the main town of Khemisset. There is good information of Zemmour pieces of this kind in the text book "Carpets and Textiles of Morocco" published by the Washington Textile Museum. Reference 2726. Size 43 x 41cms. 17 x 16ins. Euros 75.

MOROCCAN BERBER CUSHION / BAG. The square shape is unusual. The piece was woven originally as one long flat weave or kilim before being folded and stitched with an opening left along one side sufficient for it to be filled. The lattice designs are composed of cottons of many different shades and the work is extremely fine. It originates from the Berbers of Zemmour in the northern part of the Middle Atlas and I found it in the main town of Khemisset. There is good information of Zemmour pieces of this kind in the text book "Carpets and Textiles of Morocco" published by the Washington Textile Museum. Reference 2726. Size 43 x 41cms. 17 x 16ins. CLOSE UP.

MANY RUG DEALERS in the Medinas have a few bags and artifacts lying in untidy piles at the back of their rooms. I always look at them all, and sometimes find a treasure.

WOVEN ARTIFACTS OF A DIFFERENT TYPE in the market. The Berbers are skilled weavers of all sorts of items.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS BERBER PILLOW woven by a small Berber group called Beni Mtir. The front design is most unusual, as is the back which is of flat woven kilim with three embroidered stylized trees. Ref. 2228. Size 76 x 36cms, 2ft 6ins x 1ft 2ins, Euros 150.

MOROCCAN MIDDLE ATLAS BERBER PILLOW woven by a small Berber group called Beni Mtir. The front design is most unusual, as is the back which is of flat woven kilim with three embroidered stylized trees. Ref. 2228. Size 76 x 36cms, 2ft 6ins x 1ft 2ins. REVERSE.

RAJESTHAN CUSHION/PILLOW which has a simple, colorful depiction of floral forms. Reference 2809. Size 38 x 28 cms., or 15 x 11 ins. Euros 25.

EACH SIDE has a different design. The cushion will be emptied to aid shipping.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. A precious piece woven entirely of silk. Belts for ceremonial and special occasions use are worn wrapped around the waist once, or several times, according to length. This fine example is from the High Atlas south of Marrakech. It is quite usual for some silk to be used in the design but to be completely woven in silk is rare. Reference 2695. Size 190 cms., or 6ft. 3ins. long. Euros 65.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT. A precious piece woven entirely of silk. Belts for ceremonial and special occasions use are worn wrapped around the waist once, or several times, according to length. This fine example is from the High Atlas south of Marrakech. It is quite usual for some silk to be used in the design but to be completely woven in silk is rare. Reference 2695. Size 190 cms., or 6ft. 3ins. long. CLOSE UP.

ANATOLIAN TENT BAG A small and rare bag woven by pastoral Yoruk people in western Anatolia. It is called locally "oklawali" and is used to store items for bread making, especially the rolling pin. The same wools that have been used to create the design on both front and back have been used at the end of the tassels and the colours appear to be natural. The design shows minimal wear at the bottom right corner which is commensurate with having been used. A fascinating and collectable piece. Reference 2637. Size 17 x 40cms. 7in. x 15in. Euros 290.

ANATOLIAN TENT BAG A small and rare bag woven by pastoral Yoruk people in western Anatolia. It is called locally "oklawali" and is used to store items for bread making, especially the rolling pin. The same wools that have been used to create the design on both front and back have been used at the end of the tassels and the colours appear to be natural. The design shows minimal wear at the bottom right corner which is commensurate with having been used. A fascinating and collectable piece. Reference 2637. Size 17 x 40cms. 7in. x 15in. CLOSE UP.

BELOUCH / BALUCH STORAGE BAG. A very old and rare example from the Belouch / Baluch group who live in the Pakistan province of Baluchistan which joins southern Afghanistan. The top consists of a lattice weave of goat hair which, when opened, is used for the storage of small items, such as plates or cups. When the owners travel the netting is fastened at the top. The tassels are of wool and are adorned with cowrie shells and beads which simulate flowers. The embroidery is exceptional and the vibrant colours are in silk. There is a similar example in “Textiles of Baluchistan” by M.G. Konieczny on page 73, plate 46. He attributes it to the region of Chagai. Reference 2318. Size 52 x 16cms. 1ft.9in x 6in. Euros 286.

BELOUCH / BALUCH STORAGE BAG. A very old and rare example from the Belouch / Baluch group who live in the Pakistan province of Baluchistan which joins southern Afghanistan. The top consists of a lattice weave of goat hair which, when opened, is used for the storage of small items, such as plates or cups. When the owners travel the netting is fastened at the top. The tassels are of wool and are adorned with cowrie shells and beads which simulate flowers. The embroidery is exceptional and the vibrant colours are in silk. There is a similar example in “Textiles of Baluchistan” by M.G. Konieczny on page 73, plate 46. He attributes it to the region of Chagai. Reference 2318. Size 52 x 16cms. 1ft.9in x 6in. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER HEAD DRESS from the High Atlas. Colourful head covers are important items of dress for Berber women. Many special ones are reserved for ceremony and celebration. The tassels here represent multi-coloured flower heads. There is an interesting photograph of three women from the Berber High Atlas group called Ait Yazza wearing similar pieces on page 30 of the text book "North African Textiles". Reference 2689. Size 32 x 110 cms., or 13 x 44 inches. Euros 20.

MOROCCAN BERBER HEAD DRESS from the High Atlas. Colourful head covers are important items of dress for Berber women. Many special ones are reserved for ceremony and celebration. The tassels here represent multi-coloured flower heads. There is an interesting photograph of three women from the Berber High Atlas group called Ait Yazza wearing similar pieces on page 30 of the text book "North African Textiles". Reference 2689. Size 32 x 110 cms., or 13 x 44 inches. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER CEREMONIAL BELT from the Berbers of Zagora in the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the border with Algeria. This is woven with pure silk and would have been used for ceremonial occasions or celebrations. The long strands are gathered at intervals and bound with materials and silk. Examples of Berber belts using similar techniques are shown on pages 180 and 181 of the text book "Splendeurs of Maroc". Reference 2697. Size 200 cms., or 79 inches long. Euros 75.

MOROCCAN BERBER CEREMONIAL BELT from the Berbers of Zagora in the eastern High Atlas mountains close to the border with Algeria. This is woven with pure silk and would have been used for ceremonial occasions or celebrations. The long strands are gathered at intervals and bound with materials and silk. Examples of Berber belts using similar techniques are shown on pages 180 and 181 of the text book "Splendeurs of Maroc". Reference 2697. Size 200 cms., or 79 inches long. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS CUSHION / PILLOW which is an excellent example of its kind and is Berber work from the eastern High Atlas. The tassel work is exceptional and is plaited from the same wool as that used in the pillow. Berber weaving from this region has been discovered comparatively recently. The outstanding text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers shows results of extensive original field work. On Plate 87 there is a wedding blanket from Talsint which has, in part, very similar construction and identical colours. This cushion was probably part of a dowry and can form part of an interesting collection. Reference 2309. Size 40 x 65cms. 1ft.4in. x 2ft.2in. REVERSE.

MOROCCAN HIGH ATLAS CUSHION / PILLOW which is an excellent example of its kind and is Berber work from the eastern High Atlas. The tassel work is exceptional and is plaited from the same wool as that used in the pillow. Berber weaving from this region has been discovered comparatively recently. The outstanding text book "Ait Bou Ichaouen" by Alfred and Suzanne Saulniers shows results of extensive original field work. On Plate 87 there is a wedding blanket from Talsint which has, in part, very similar construction and identical colours. This cushion was probably part of a dowry and can form part of an interesting collection. Reference 2309. Size 40 x 65cms. 1ft.4in. x 2ft.2in. Euros 155. FIRST SIDE.

PERSIAN KURDISH ARTIFACT. This finely worked piece is a collar for a small animal and would be used on ceremonial occasions. The fine decorative tassels, adorned with cowrie shells, are intact and the piece is Kurdish work from western Persia. The dyes are natural. Reference 2319. Size 63 x 14cms. 2ft.1in. x 5in. CLOSE UP.

PERSIAN KURDISH ARTIFACT. This finely worked piece is a collar for a small animal and would be used on ceremonial occasions. The fine decorative tassels, adorned with cowrie shells, are intact and the piece is Kurdish work from western Persia. The dyes are natural. Reference 2319. Size 63 x 14cms. 2ft.1in. x 5in. Euros 75.

REVERSE SIDE showing simple trees. The extra length of the kilim at the back is most unusual and may have been used as a flap to cover the opening of the bag.

BERBER TENT BAG/PILLOW. Although woven in one long piece before being folded in half and stitched to make bag or pillow, seldom can two sides have such different designs. The face is intricately embroidered and the use of green pinpoints the origin to a small Berber group in the western Middle Atlas. The reverse side, or back, is a simplistic portrayal of line of trees. The piece is very old but in good condition. Reference 2951. Size 72 x 38 cms., or 28 x 15 ins. Euros 78.

MOROCCAN BERBER CEREMONIAL BELT. This originates from the deep south of the country and is a finely plaited belt, decorated with charms and embroidered in cotton and silk. The two ends are very attractive. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, pages 180 and 208 for information on ropes and belts. Ref. 1950. Size 400 cms. 13ft.2in. long. CLOSE UP.

MOROCCAN BERBER CEREMONIAL BELT. This originates from the deep south of the country and is a finely plaited belt, decorated with charms and embroidered in cotton and silk. The two ends are very attractive. See `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, pages 180 and 208 for information on ropes and belts. Ref. 1950. Size 400 cms. 13ft.2in. long. Euros 58.

PERSIAN BALOUCH / BELOUCH BAG. A piece to enhance a serious collection. It is from the Salor Khani sub-group and dates from the early 20th century. It is soft and supple with glowing colours. There is some corrosion in the black and a little understandable wear in the bottom corners. Two goat hair hanging loops form part of the original overcasting and there are two areas in the field that are piled with camel hair. This type of bag very seldom appears and I know of only two others since 2007. Reference 2374. Size 69 x 72cms. 2ft.3in. x 2ft.4in. Euros 225.

MOROCCAN BERBER BELT this originates from the region of Mrirt in the south of the Middle Atlas and is a woven belt for a Berber man. It would be used mostly for ceremony. Information on ropes and belts can be seen in `Splendeurs du Maroc` - Musee Royal de l`Afrique Centrale, 1998, pages 180 and 209. Reference 1931. Size 90cms, 3 ft, long. Euros 58.