We have been to Flores, one of the Nusa Tenggera islands of eastern Indonesia, three times. It is usually incredibly hot! Last time, we did what I've been wanting to do for a long time, an ikat weaving course. This just confirmed to me how bloomin' amazing the ikat weavers of Flores are and just how much skill, patience and time goes into making their textiles. Flores has always been famous for the beauty and intricacy of its ikat. A girl is expected to be able to weave ikat textiles for her family before she is thought ready to marry.
Each village has its own designs and dyes and the scarves and sarongs which we bought there are mostly dyed with local natural plant dyes. These are mainly indigo blue, mangrove bark for black, soga brown, mango leaf for green and mengkudu (morinda citrifolia) root for all kinds of shades from deep red to pale apricot. Each one we sell ensures that we can continue to spend money with the weaving women who often use their weaving income to pay for their kids to go to school.
Have a look at the Indigo textiles section for a few more Flores ikats.
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