About this object

A rectangular cloak (pihepihe or karure) made from New Zealand Flax fibre with 'unraveling' black-dyed tassels forming a fringe along the neck edge and over the main section of the cloak, together with partly stripped and dyed cylindrical leaf tags. The side and bottom edges also have white and brown feathers.

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 ends of the loose warp (whenu) ends forming a fringe, and finished with a plait along the neck edge at the top. Loose warp ends at the sides of the neck edge form short fringes, which also have cylindrical leaf tags and black tassels twined in the right way up.

There is one short extra weft (aho poka) on each side at the neck edge, then five sets of paired short extra wefts below them on each side to provide shaping.

All twisted tassels are three-ply and made to look as though they are unraveling slightly. The fringe at the neck edge has tassels inserted upside down in a row of single-pair twining. The cylindrical leaf strips are inserted vertically, with the two ends hanging down to form tags. There are remains of alternating brown feathers (possibly kiwi) and white feathers on the other three sides of the cloak. The feathers are attached vertically in groups of four or five.

The black-dyed New Zealand flax is very fragile.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Oceania: Polynesia: New Zealand
  • Date made
    1932 before
  • Materials
    Twined, dyed; Fibre Yarn Flax (NZ) (Phormium sp); Dye; Feather
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Purchased from Norwich Castle Museum, 1956
  • Collector
    Granville John Berney Duff
  • Place collected
  • Date collected
    1932 before
  • Measurements
    177.0 x 1.0 x 122.0 cm
  • Note
    Acquired by Norwich Castle Museum from Colonel Granville Duff in 1932.
  • Related people
    Granville John Berney Duff ( Collector, previous owner); Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery ( Previous owner)


Previous owners

Object view = Humanities
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