Glossary

AJAX progress indicator
(clear)
  • Leaf Fiber
    Fibers 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 Rod
    A rod, sometimes a pair of rods, usually inserted during warping and used to maintain a warp crossing. Generally found close to the warp beam.
  • Leash
    See heddle string.
  • Linen
    A bast fiber obtained from flax (Linum usitatissimim).
  • Loin Loom
    See body-tensioned loom.
  • Loop-Heddle
    A type of heddle that consists of loops of string (leashes) that enclose warps.
  • Menkudu
    See Morinda citrifolia.
  • Metal Threads
    See metallic yarns.
  • Metallic Yarns, Metallised Threads, Metal Threads
    Yarns, 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.
  • Mica
    A 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.
  • Moiety
    A subgrouping with an ethnic group, based on kinship.
  • Mordant
    A 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 System
    A 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).
  • Naga
    A 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 Shed
    One 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 Cord
    Part of a drawloom or a Jacquard loom; a cord that connects a leash to the patterning device.
  • Openwork
    A 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 sampler consisting of sticks embedded in strings, recording a design for supplementary warp patterning.
  • Palepai
    A long ceremonial cloth from the Lampung region, decorated with ships and other motifs.