NA122 – Tunisian bridal tunic, mwashma, Raf Raf, late C 19th – early C20th
Hand woven cotton cloth, imported net cloth, silk, wool, metal thread, and metal sequins. One of the most distinctive and spectacular Tunisian garments, the example in the British Museum was shown on the cover of their book on North African textiles (Christopher Spring & Julie Hudson, North African Textiles, British Museum Press, 1995.) Called mwashma, “the tattooed one”, these rare tunics were worn by a new bride only on the third day of the wedding ceremonies in the village of Raf Raf in north eastern Tunisia. The star shaped motifs embroidered in the center of the squares in the background cloth resembled designs used in henna decoration of the bride’s hands, while other motifs included various good luck symbols and tree of life.
Size: width: 48 inches, 121 cm, length 42 inches, 107 cm. Condition: Very good, some faint colour run in places.
Christopher Spring & Julie Hudson, North African Textiles, British Museum Press, 1995
Various, Noces tissees, Noces brodees: parures et costumes feminins de Tunisie, Editions Joel Cuenot, 1995 – page 42 – tunic now in Musee du Quai Branly, Paris
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.)