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Original Message:   Memory
Thanks, Chris. I'm always amazed to be able to stand and watch as the pattern in the finished silk fabric emerges as if by magic from the apparently meaningless colours in the thread. In the past, weaving was an important source of additional income (most weavers are also agricultural workers). But nowadays, sadly, they can make money more easily by weaving reed mats for the floor than from weaving silk. Still, though, they return to it for pleasure and satisfaction, as well as to make clothes for ceremonial wear for themselves and their families. This includes the costumes they will be cremated in.

I can't reply definitively to your question, Rosanna, but I've never seen anyone use a drawn pattern. I would imagine they must have made these when they were learning the art initially, and I have seen them using little lengths of split bamboo to measure off the space between the dyed patches of the thread, but it's all done with complete ease, laughing and chatting as they go along.

Cheers,

Will

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