Lovely hand-made in the traditional way by the women from Bishkek. We first came across these felt dolls in The Grand Bazaar in Istanbul in the shop of a Kazak friend of ours. We bought 12, sold them immediately and asked him to send us more. We assumed they came from Kazakstan, but people more knowledgeable than us told us they were Kyrgyz. So when we realised that we would be going through Kyrgyzstan on our "Great Cross Asia Textile Journey" we decided to find them.
It took a long time to track them down to one small workshop in the capital, Bishkek. The workshop had originally been set up with the help of a UNESCO grant to give some work to women who had traditional felt making skills. Now it stands alone as a great little business and we continue to sell their lovely individually made felt ladies (and the occasional man!)
We also have a small selection of shadow puppets and wooden rod puppets from Java in the shop, and a whole set of original leather shadow puppets from Turkey.
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