Palestian Embroidery, £10.99
Length: 55.000 cm
AOA Ethno 1966.As1.3
Africa, Oceania, Americas
From Bethlehem or Beit Jala, modern Palestinian Authority, early 20th century AD
This woman's jacket (taqsireh) is made from red woollen broadcloth (jukh) decorated with silk cord couching (tahriri, meaning 'from Bethlehem') and satin-stitch embroidery. Such garments were inspired by church vestments and by the uniform jackets of official and military personnel. One taqsireh specialist used to sit behind a church official, memorizing the pattern on his clothing, and then rush home to copy it.
Jackets such as this were decorated by professional female embroiderers, and sold throughout the hills of southern Palestine for wearing on special occasions. During the British Mandate period (1918-48), when people had more money, they were made from velvet and decorated with gilt cord couching.
S. Weir and S. Shahid, Palestinian embroidery (London, The British Museum Press, 1989)
S. Weir, Palestinian costume (London, The British Museum Press, 1989)