Skirt cloth (sampot hol)
This fine silk skirt cloth (sampot) was part of daily clothing in Cambodia in the first half of the 20th century. It was created by women using an intricate resist dyed patterning technique known in Khmer (Cambodian) as hol but more widely referred to as ikat. In this technique complex designs are tied and dyed into the silk before weaving.
The textile displays three clear areas of patterning – a large central field surrounded by mirrored panels at either end and simple designs along each side. While the pattern placement derives from treasured Indian patola cloths traded to Southeast Asia from Gujarat since at least the 15th century, the destinctive design is identifiably Cambodian. Silk textiles of this style appear in Cambodian temple paintings and similar cloths appear on Khmer sculptures of the 12th and 13th centuries.