This book surveys the wide array of textiles made, worn, used, and displayed throughout the Islamic world, from the glorious fabrics of the past to those produced today. Hundreds of illustrations feature examples from around the globe, including embroidered Persian prayer cloths, Anatolian ikat coats, Ottoman beaded purses, Caucasian striped silk bags, Berber women’s shawls, Arab tent decorations, Yemeni indigo robes, Indonesian batik sarongs, and West African strip-woven cloths.
Region by region, the book provides details of local history, particular textile traditions, materials, dyes, special forms of decoration, and information on current practice. The variety is stunning, from cloths of cotton, hemp, linen, and wool to sumptuous velvets and silks; from techniques of quilting, felting, beading, and knitting to block-printing, tie-dyeing, and hand-weaving on a range of looms.
Specially taken color photographs, portraits of weavers in action, and rare archival material complete a remarkable visual panorama. Together with a glossary and a guide to textile collections around the world, this comprehensive survey provides a wealth of information and will be invaluable to anyone interested in the rich art of textiles, costume, or craft.
John Gillow has spent over three decades studying, collecting, and lecturing on textiles. His other books include Textiles of the Islamic World and Indian Textiles.