Cloak card



On display

A rectangular cloak (korowai) made from New Zealand Flax fibre with rolled tassels at intervals on the outside and forming fringes on all edges. The side edges have two lines of fringing. This garment was made by finger-weaving or twining without the use of a loom. The main technique used is double-pair twining, which forms the wefts (aho). This began at the bottom edge with the loose ends of the warps (whenu) left as a fringe, and finished with the warps folded over at the neck edge, except at the sides of the neck edge where they are left loose and form short fringes. The wefts are tied off and cut at the side edges. There are five warps per cm and the wefts (aho) are 7-8mm apart. There are 14 grouped short extra wefts (aho poka) on each side of the shoulder area and one each side at the neck to provide shaping. The black-dyed tassels are two-ply and rolled. They are inserted sideways into the weft on the main part of the cloak, the right way up at the neck, and upside down on the bottom fringe (where they are inserted into a line of single-pair twining). Some tassels are broken off and the black-dyed flax is generally very fragile.