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The Balinese use miles of this kain kotak-kotak, a traditional checked cotton fabric that plays an important role in their ceremonial life.

Kain is cloth and kotak means box, reflecting the checkered pattern that results from the weave of the different coloured threads.

In this case, those threads feature the three most important colours for Balinese Hindus, the Tri Datu representing the three gods of the universe - red for Brahma (the creator), white for Siwa (Shiva - the destroyer) and black for Wisnu (Vishnu - the preserver).

The checks in this textile are 10mm square.

I also stock larger box pattern in the same colours with checks 50mm square that you can see here - http://www.etsy.com/listing/66621675/balinese-kain-kotak-traditional-textile

AT A GLANCE
Size: 1 meter (W) x 1.4 meter (L)
Pattern size: 10mm square checks
Weight: Approx 137grams
Colour: Red (merah), white (putih), black (hitam)
Material: Kain kotak-kotak cotton fabric
Extra info: This item is ready to ship and will be dispatched from Bali, Indonesia, via Pos Indonesia registered air mail. Unfortunately, the costs are higher than the cost of the fabric. I combine shipping with other items up to 250 grams if you see that as a way to get value for money. I will refund on any shipping overpayment in excess of $1.00.
Extra info: If you want longer lengths, please convo me. Wash before use as the fabric contains a substantial amount of sizing.

BACK STORY
Like so many elements of Balinese life, textiles such as kain kotak and kain poleng - a black and white checked fabric - are offerings to the gods.

Traditionally, the three colors of Tri Datu were made with animal blood for the red colour, chalk or lime for the white colour, and charcoal for the black colour.

Often you'll see Balinese wearing the three colours in threads placed around their right wrist and always applied with prayers. It's meant to calm the mind and ward of negative thoughts.

Lengths of Tri Datu fabric and kain poleng often adorn sacred trees and rocks, as seen in my final photo.

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“We sleep, but the loom of life never stops, and the pattern which was weaving when the sun went down is weaving when it comes up in the morning.” ~ Henry Ward Beecher, Liberal US Congregational minister, 1813-1887
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Balinese Kain Kotak Kotak Traditional Textile, 1 meter

$4.50 USD
Only 1 available
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Overview

  • Materials: cotton cloth, cotton fabric, cotton textile
  • Ships worldwide from Ubud, Indonesia
  • Feedback: 1539 reviews
  • Favorited by: 6 people