Mud_Cloth_Cushion

Mud Cloth Cushion 3

Among African fabrics, the mud cloth of Mali in West Africa is as well-known as the Kente cloth of Ghana. Mud cloth is made of cotton strips woven by men and stitched together to form a larger cloth. Women then decorate the cloth with mud from the seasonal rivers in Mali. Mud cloth patterns are rich with meaning for the Bamana people of Mali; they symbolize the use of the cloth or convey messages to the wearer.

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$50.00

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Applying patterns to mud cloth is labor intensive and time consuming. First women soak the rough cotton cloth in leaves that have a natural softening agent called tannin. When they apply clay in bands, diamonds, and other geometric shapes, the clay reacts with the tannin and a dark brown design is left on the fabric. The background of the fabric is then bleached white or cream to improve the contrast of the design.

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