Karbi Pība, Assam | Muga Ghicha, Assam-Nagaland | Eri Silk woven on back strap loom, Nagaland

The black with red striped back strap loom woven panel of the Dupatta is Pība, a Karbi mother’s wrap. Karbi is an indigenous community of Karbi Anglong, Assam.

Next to it is hand spun, lac-dyed Eri silk from Kamrup district Assam taken to Zuketsa region of Nagaland. During pandemic, as a livelihood opportunity, and keep them engaged remotely, we asked the weavers of Nagaland to weave hand spun Eri Silk of Assam. Weaving on back strap loom lends a unique slub texture to Eri silk.

The two long ends are Muga Ghicha. I took the Muga Ghicha yarn from Gogamukh, upper Assam to be woven by Khampti tribe of Arunachal Pradesh. This resulted in yet another unique texture in the weave because of the irregular nature of hand spun Muga Ghicha.

On the falling ends of the Dupatta are stripes of two distinct weaves. On left end, Karbi motifs are woven on traditional loom. On the right end of the Dupatta, alternating weft motif is woven on back strap loom of Nagaland.

This dupatta holds the ability to bring together textile-making prowess of such diverse communities and yet remain quietly visible, that is the feeling I evoke through this heirloom textile that I call Chieftess.

Buyer Empowerments

Eri silk and Muga Ghicha aspect of Dupatta
Wearable textile made with ancient spinning, weaving and dyeing techniques of Assam, Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh. Home- reared, Hand spun, hand woven following indigenous methodology.
100% natural, Protein- based, organic, hand-made, from nature-back to nature. Something to grow old with and then pass it on to loved ones.
Thermal insulation, Moisture absorption, UV protective, completely bio-degradable.
Karbi Pība and other cotton weave aspects of Dupatta
Indigenous textiles of Assam and Nagaland that involves traditional handloom weaving.
Mill spun mercerised cotton yarn with Azo-free dyeing
Combined aspects of the Dupatta
One of a kind heirloom textile documenting various indigenous textile skills in a colour combination best adapted to ancient standard of aesthetics.
Weather/ Mood
Pleasant-not warm not cold. Should give warmth on a slightly nippy evening. Should also protect from blazing Sun.
Not fragile
Dry Clean recommended; Needs “Airing” in shadow, not direct sun. Do not wring. Occasional starch finish will lift up the form.
Statement piece, celebratory, substantial, traditional translated to modern
Made in rural household. Weaves made by artisan at home in available time- supporting farming lifestyle. In support of indigenous knowledge of Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. 
No bargaining with artisans. Mutual decision-making. 
No deadline/ pressure based work environment. 
No gender structures assumed while designing the product. 
Supports non- industrial tailoring skills. 
Faith in up-skilling unskilled artisans.
Eri silk handspun and natural dyed with supervision from Narmohan Das under creative guidelines from Mora.
Eri silk woven in Nagaland with the help of facilitation from Pfolo Kreo.
Karbi weaves made in Karbi Anglong.
Muga ghicha yarn by spinner of Gogamukh, Assam.
Muga Ghicha weaving with supervision from Nang Dharmavati, Arunachal Pradesh.
Back strap loom weaves made with supervision from North East Network, with creative guidelines from Mora.
Cotton yarn from Salem, Tamil Nadu.
Stitched by Gurmel Singh, Jalalabad, Punjab.
Tassels by Param, Bathinda, Punjab.
Mora Collective 2021
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