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 this, is handspun lac-dyed Eri silk from Kamrup district Assam taken to Zuketsa region of Nagaland. During pandemic, as a livelihood opportunity, and to 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.