Sunday, April 8, 2012

A Visit to the Weaving Sites of Ilocos Norte

During the recently concluded international forum of traditional weavers on ASEAN and China in Laoag City, the delegates were taken to a site visit of the weaving communities of Paoay and Sarrat towns.

The delegation composed of weavers, designers, marketing experts, cultural officers, ambassadors and dignitaries from Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Brunei Darussalam, Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia, Myanmar, China and the Philippines went to visit the different barangays of Paoay and Sarrat which are engaged in weaving. The country’s delegates including weavers from Ifugao, Aklan and Basilan had the chance to interact with the local weavers.

Barangays Nalasin and Nagbacalan were visited by the delegates. They had the opportunity to see and view the very old and traditional looms used by the weavers in producing inabel textiles. It is made of cotton and other natural fibers. The communities happily welcomed the guests. Some of the delegates bought the indigenous textiles.

Same as through with the barangays of Sarrat especially San Jose, the Binakol textile was showcased to the guests. We have seen only one household which weave binakol. It is a textile found originally in Sarrat. It is a fabric with geometric patterns using dark blue and white cotton threads accented with yarn with bright colors. Guests fell in love with the textile and they bought their own binakol products such as bags, hats, coin purses and many others.

Seldom now do we find young people engaged in this weaving practice. More motivation is needed to transfer this traditional art skill. I was surprised to see one man who is engaged in the weaving industry. He can be a good example to boys who would want to engage also in this work.

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