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Photo Wednesday: Traditional Batak Weaving

October 17, 2012

Photo by: Diana O’Gilvie

Our motorbikes roared into the sleepy Batak village.  We were trying to beat the rain back to the hotel.  But I convinced my friend to make one last quick stop.  I noticed this girl in the distance.  As we moved closer, I was amazed that the rhythmic clanging of the wood was being made by this twelve year old girl.

Weaving is very important to Batak culture.  It takes six weeks to make a two yards long blanket or an ulos ni tondi or “cloth of the soul.”  Traditional Batak weaving is done with homemade dyed threads.  It is the woman’s job to weave, although men and boys help with the dying and thread spooling.


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