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Asian art

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'Phaa sin' (skirt cloth)

19th century


Unknown Artist


This skirt cloth was once used for a wedding ceremony and comes from the royal palace at Luang Prabang in Laos. It was collected by a French diplomat between 1830 and 1869. The textile itself comprises three pieces. The top section ties around the waist and is made red silk with continuous supplementary weft stripes of green, blue, and white yarns, as well as metal-wrapped threads. It would have been changed regularly due to wear and tear on the fabric during use. The centre part is decorated with fine stripes composed of green, yellow, and brown yarns, as well as metal-wrapped threads and brownish-purple yarns that are embellished with pinkish spots produced by the ikat (tie-dye) method. This part of the textile has dark brown warp threads. The band at the base of the textile has brownish-green warp threads and cotton indigo-blue weft ones. There are also green and red weft threads, as well as metal-wrapped ones. Some of the metal-wrapped threads are part of the regular weaving, and some are supplementary (extra) yarns that form the chevron shapes. All three pieces have been sewn together with a running stitch.

Asian Art Department, AGNSW, October 2011


Other Title

pha sin (skirt cloth)

Place where the work was made

Luang Prabang Laos


19th century

Media category


Materials used

Silk, cotton, metal-wrapped threads, natural dyes; weft ikat, continuous supplementary weft weaving


71.2 x 101.0 cm (irreg.)


Gift of Nomadic Rug Traders 2003


Not on display

Accession number