by Universaltribes Admin on Apr 06, 2023
The Naga tribes of Northeast India are the originators of the ancient hand-weaving method known as "Naga weaving." The elaborate designs and use of natural colours in Naga textiles are well-known characteristics. The weaving is done on a back-strap loom, and the patterns frequently depict the Naga people's cultural values and traditions. The craft of naga weaving is a vital component of the tribal identity of the naga and is passed down through the generations.
Tribal Communities practise Naga Weaving
The Naga tribes of Northeast India are the originators of the ancient hand-weaving method known as "Naga weaving." Native Indians known as the Naga tribes reside in the northeastern Indian states of Nagaland, Manipur, Arunachal Pradesh, and Assam. Although each Naga tribe has its own own culture, customs, and textiles, the Naga weave connects all of the tribes and plays a significant role in their cultural legacy. The Naga people have been weaving for decades, and it is a crucial aspect of who they are.
Northeast India is home to a number of Naga tribes, some of the more well-known of which are:
- tribe of Angami Community
- tribe Ao Community
- tribe of Chakhesang Community
- tribe of Konyak Community
- Tribe of Lotha Community
- Tribe of Rengma Community
- tribe of Sema Community
- tribe of Sumi Community
- tribe of Zeliang Community
These tribes' distinctive designs, hues, and manufacturing processes give their textiles a distinctive personality and cultural value. The traditional craft of naga weaving, which is passed down from one generation to the next, remains a crucial component of the tribal identity and culture of the naga people.
Method of Naga Weaving
The back-strap loom used in the Naga weave technique has one end fastened to a fixed object and the other tied around the weaver's waist. To tension the warp threads and produce the woven fabric, the weaver sits on the ground and rocks back and forth. The cloth is made by weaving the weft and warp threads together with a shuttle. Naga weavers frequently colour the threads with natural dyes made from regional plants, enhancing the textiles' distinctive personality and aesthetic appeal. The exquisite designs and rich cultural heritage of Naga textiles make them highly coveted, despite the time-consuming, skillful, and patient weaving technique.
The steps in the Naga weaving technique are as follows:
Creating the Warp: Cotton or silk fibres are spun into a continuous length to create the warp threads. After that, the threads are coloured with organic colours made from nearby plants.
- establishing the loom One end of the back-strap loom is tied to a stationary object, and the other end is fastened around the weaver's waist. The warp threads are uniformly spaced and stretched between the two ends.
- The weaver sits on the floor and rocked back and forth to adjust the tension of the warp threads before beginning to weave the weft. The woven fabric is made by weaving the weft and warp threads together with a shuttle.
- Naga weavers frequently paint their threads with natural dyes derived from nearby plants. Before or after the weaving process, the threads are dyed.
- Finishing the Fabric: After weaving is finished, the fabric is taken off the loom and washed to get rid of any impurities. After that, the material is brushed or finished by pressing it to dry.
The elaborate designs and rich cultural heritage of Naga textiles make them highly regarded despite the time-consuming, skillful, and patient weaving procedure. The distinctive designs, hues, and production methods used by each Naga tribe give their textiles a particular personality and cultural significance.
Products of Naga Weaving
The Naga people employ their proficiency in weaving to make a wide range of fabrics and goods, including:
- Shawls: Made from delicate threads, Naga shawls are prized for their elaborate patterns and vivid hues.
- Naga blankets are used for warmth and are heavier and coarser than shawls.
- Naga scarves are smaller than shawls but nonetheless worn as fashion accessories frequently.
- Handwoven bags are made by Naga weavers to carry everyday necessities.
- Rugs: Naga rugs are famous for their durability and are used as floor covering.
- Beautiful wall hangings made by Naga weavers serve as both pieces of art and cultural emblems.
Due to their cultural significance, intricate designs, and use of natural dyes, these textiles and goods are highly treasured. They are frequently utilised as cultural identifying markers and in traditional Naga ceremonies.
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