Colour and patterns
Colour is the most immediately visible stylistic element. The two-colour or polychrome process depends on the number of dye baths which follow the preparation of reserves. Formerly exclusively natural, dyes today are often synthetic. The choice of colour is associated with symbolism of the colours and this aspect is equally referred to here.
Some original patterns come from reserve-dyeing processes and are revealed by playing with the colours.
sewing on pleats
Woman’s loincloth Guinea, Fouta Djalon, Peul,20th century Handspun cotton, Z-twist Francine N’Diaye Mission 71.1988.69.30.
Production from the women of Peul is distributed throughout Fouta Djalon in Guinea and on the other side of the border with Senegal where this loincloth has been purchased. The cloth is woven locally on a double heddle loom. The fabric beforehand is folded in two along its length, then the reserves are sewn : overcast stitch then zigzag on a large pleat, and overcast then isolated stitching on two pleats. The fabric is then dyed in a bath of vegetable indigo. Pleats in one direction, then in the other on some narrow strips, as well as variations in sewing lead to various patterns and a range of blue colours whose intensity is linked to the handling of the fabric. 165x116 cm