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This item sold on September 6, 2012.

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This beautiful handwoven wool bag is 15" by 15 with a 38" strap that drops 23" from the shoulder. The bag is unlined. The longest tassels below the bag hang approximately 24". The front of the bag is a pile, the back of this bag is a woven stripe. These handbags were used mostly by men & hung on side of horses or camels during travel. The handbag does not have any compartments or zippers inside. This type of bag has a noble & rich history.

Handwoven bags from the Middle East are breathtakingly beautiful. Traditionally, tribal women wove bags for both personal use & to carry items on camels or horses, as they traveled from place to place carrying clothes, or salt, or commondities to trade. Sometimes, the camels & horses themselves were decorated with bright, colorful tassels to blow in the wind & move as they walked.

Nomadic women in Western & Central Asia have made personal bags of many different types for centuries. Their small formats offered endless design opportunities for creative weavers, making them collectors' favorites. Most of these flat-woven bags were made in Turkey, Persia, & the Caucasus.

Women wove chantas or small bags for personal items continuously, if eratically, throughout the all of weaving areas of the Middle East. Virtually any structure can apprear in these - soumak, brocading, weft-substitution, tapestry, & combinations of these.

Tribal weavers fashioned the outside of bags into elaborate flat woven fabric (as seen in kilims); intricately hand-knotted piles (as seen in carpets); or elegantly embroidered patterns (called cicim, pronounced “ji-Jjim” in Turkish).

Tribal women often added beautiful decorative elements such as beads, tassels, fringes, elegant embroidery, or braided wools to their creations. These amazing designs include stylized representations of birds, animals, plants, & even of the women themselves. Some designs, however, were simply decorative.

Women wove & felted bags with wools from goats, sheep & camels, usually colored with dyes made from plants, insects, & natural pigments. Natural dyes produce much subtler colors than today's synthetic dyes. To wash, use cool water & a natural, gentle soap. Air dry. Or dry clean.

Wonderful old Middle Eastern wool bag tassels