Technique – supports and reserves
The supports on which the reserves are made vary according to the raw material used and its treatment, and according to the structure of the fabric. They reflect availabilities in the natural environment but also aesthetic and cultural choices.
Two large groups of reserve can be seen : reserves that are tied and others that are sewn. They can be made without a mark or, on the contrary, follow a pattern inscribed beforehand in or on the fabric. The link itself is by nature variable : A thread of cotton, a strand of raffia, a strip of plastic or rubber, etc.
Small headscarf, floba, waved during parades and dances. Ivory Coast, Dida, beginning of the 20th century Raffia Former collection of Jean-Pierre Martin 73.1998.6.7
Diagonal plaiting The raffia comes from the leaves of the raffia palm which are cut in flat and thin strands. These are plaited on a flat surface or by forming a tube with such regularity that it appears that they are woven. The reserves are prepared after plaiting by knot tying on a cone or on a pinched pleat. The textile is then put in a natural dye bath. The reserve process is repeated several times. Once the ties have been withdrawn, the fabric has a honeycomb appearance which is of great value. This expert knowledge was the privilege of women in high-ranking families and the textiles fabricated had a ceremonial function. 46x49 cm