Ikat, a fabric that knows no frontiers
We present a selection of our ikat fabrics. Four very different options of geometric and tribal prints that speak of a fabric with a lot of history. Each of them transport us to a different place in the world:
The collection consists of different drawings, some of which are more tropical, others more ethnic and even floral, but they all are mixed with elegance in natural bases. Its colorful patterns transport us to the magical India.
A collection of vivid colors that echoes the Mediterranean: from the ikat of Asia Minor, to the Mallorcan languages to which they refer their evocative geometric patterns on linen and cotton.
Fabric with ikat type design digitally printed on a fine linen and cotton base. Its soft blue, gray and stone colors remind us of Turkey. Discreet but it does not go unnoticed.
Influenced by ethnic prints, the Sioux collection takes us to the area of Uzbekistan. Its two-tone ikat fabric in cotton, fresh colors and very contemporary, coordinate perfectly with the Townhill and Yosemite collection. It is ideal for curtains and accessories.
The history of ikat
Ikat comes from the Malay word mengikat. This means to tie or to bind and refers to the process by which the pattern is created. The word was introduced in the western culture in the 20th century. Ikat uses a resist-dyeing technique, but rather than applying the pattern to cloth, it’s created earlier by wrapping bundles of yarn before they’re dyed.
It’s one of the oldest known forms of textile decoration, but pinpointing the precise origin of ikat very difficult. This is largely due to the fact that fabric perishes over time, but also because it appears to have developed independently across different cultures and continents as there have been found ikat fabrics in regions such as Asia-Pacific (China, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan), Latin America (Guatemala, Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, Chile and Argentina), the Middle East (Egypt, Iran, Syria, Turkey and Yemen), West Africa and Europe (Italy and Spain). In each country, there are regional differences, historical and cultural significance. In Manjari Nirula’s words, vice-president World Craft Council Asia Pacific Region, “It is amazing how the entire world comes together with this one fabric. The process of tying and dyeing and weaving is the same everywhere. What changes is the yarn (cotton, silk, wool, banana fibre, grass) together with the colour combination and the formation of motifs that gives ikat from each country a distinctive touch.”
Last year, the World Crafts Council and the World Crafts Council Asia Pacific presented an unprecedented multicultural exhibition celebrating the rich legacy of Ikat. This unique collection brings together a variety of some of Ikat’s invaluable pieces. Here are some of the exhibits that show that the Ikat is a fabric that does not go out of fashion or knows borders.