C19th Silk Fragment


AS814 -A precious fragment of ancestral Yoruba heirlooom cloth

1 in stock


A precious fragment of ancestral Yoruba heirlooom cloth. This four strip section of nineteenth century asooke alternates two beautiful stripe patterns woven from pink silk alaari (natural dyed in Tripoli and bought to Nigeria across the Sahara by the camel caravan trade), with hand spun local indigo dyed cotton and red and yellow imported mill spun thread. As such it was a luxurious textile that expressed both the wealth of the wearer and their embodiment of ancient Yoruba cultural values. As the cloth was handed down through generations it was divided between daughters so only this section remains. Even so it could still be worn wrapped around the waist over a pale lace outfit at important cultural occasions. There’s some wear and a couple of tiny holes (where the hem was unpicked rather roughly) but it retains the characteristic luxuriant silk colour. Measurements 76 inches x 18 1/2, 194 cm x 47. Dates from second half of C19th.

All items on this site are vintage. That means that they may have a few small marks or blemishes consistent with use. We will try to highlight any significant issues in the description above but in the event you are not happy with your purchase please notify us within 48 hours of receipt and you may return it for a full refund (excluding return shipping costs.)