Glossary

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  • Leaf FiberFibers extracted from leaves, such as banana, abaca and raffia. Compare bast. In the Indonesian and the Philippine archipelago these include abaca (a type of banana), lemba and lontar palms. Such fibers were probably important throughout the region before the advent of cotton but are now confined to a few regions.
  • Lease RodA rod, sometimes a pair of rods, usually inserted during warping and used to maintain a warp crossing. Generally found close to the warp beam.
  • LeashSee heddle string.
  • LinenA bast fiber obtained from flax (Linum usitatissimim).
  • Loin LoomSee body-tensioned loom.
  • Loop-HeddleA type of heddle that consists of loops of string (leashes) that enclose warps.
  • MenkuduSee Morinda citrifolia.
  • Metal ThreadsSee metallic yarns.
  • Metallic Yarns, Metallised Threads, Metal ThreadsYarns, usually silver or gold in color, that appear to be made of metal. They are usually produced by applying gold or silver leaf on a paper substrate that is sliced into thin strips and wound around a core of silk or ramie fiber. Additional variants include pure metal lamellae or wire wound around fiber cores or used directly in a textile.
  • MicaA shiny mineral that cleaves into thin, flat plates. Used for decorating textiles in some areas, a precursor to the use of commercial sequins or glass.
  • MoietyA subgrouping with an ethnic group, based on kinship.
  • MordantA chemical substance that causes a dye to bind to a textile. Mordants are essential for most dyes used on cotton and other cellulose fibers (with the notable exception of indigo) since dyes bind poorly to cellulose on their own. This fact can be exploited to make patterns on textiles by painting or printing the mordant onto the surface before dyeing (mordant resist).
  • Morinda Citrifolia(Mengkudu in Indonesian, Engkudu Iban) an important red dye, used throughout the Indonesian archipelago, producing shades ranging from red-browns to true reds on cotton fibers. Morinda is used in combination with oil-based mordants, and the mordanting and dyeing process must be repeated, often ten to twenty times, to build up dark, rich shades. It is rarely used on silk since it tends to produce an unattractive brown shade on this fiber. Silk is usually dyed with sappanwood or lac to produce shades of red.
  • Multi-Heddle Patterning SystemA system in which warp lifts for patterning are recorded on multiple simple heddles, each heddle recording the warp lifts for one weft insertion (compare complex pattern heddle).
  • NagaA serpent-like water dragon, a mythical animal that appears in various guises throughout Southeast Asia. Representations of the naga vary from detailed and lifelike to stylized and abstracted S, Z and W shapes found on some textiles.
  • Natural ShedOne of two sheds used for making plain weave fabrics, the other opening being called the counter shed. On simple looms the natural shed is held open with a stick (shed stick or shed rod).
  • Necking CordPart of a drawloom or a Jacquard loom; a cord that connects a leash to the patterning device.
  • OpenworkA textile with open spaces for decorative effect. Openwork is not a specific technique a variety of techniques such as knotting and interlacing can be used to produce this effect.
  • Pahudu (Sumba)A pattern guide consisting of sticks embedded in strings, recording a design for supplementary warp patterning.
  • PalepaiA long ceremonial cloth from the Lampung region, decorated with ships and other motifs.