Monday, August 9, 2010

Seraya - last weaving stop on the tour

Seraya is a coastal town in East Bali but up high. We take the scenic route and are soon winding through villages, past the Water Gardens and up and down. It's much dryer and we spot what looks like prickly pear. The leader of the Karya Seni Warna Alam weaver's coop is I Wayan Karya and he's an entertaining and entrepreneurial man. They weave from their own, homegrown cotton.

Wayan in the garden showing us a cotton boll he had just picked.

Then it has to be spun. In other places we had seen all sorts of arrangements for spinning - not all places use a wheel, some do the entire process by hand and must spin the spindle with one hand. At Seraya they use a home-made wheel, but we have also seen a lot of old bicycle wheels starting a new turn of duty.

Spinning the cotton.

And a here's a video of how to spin cotton (for all those people with leftover bicycle wheels at home who are just wondering what to do with them). NB - when I published this I realised you will have to turn you head 90 degrees to watch it. I'm sure you can manage because I can't rotate the vid! Either that or consider spinning lying down.

I found out how to make black dye - first you dye the cotton red by repeatedly dyeing, drying and re-dying until it is a deep red. Then you hot dye it in something with a high tannin content, and then dip it in water with a few rusty nails in it. This co-op was also doing some great indigo dyeing using an indigo that looks much more like the Australian one than others we saw elsewhere.

Indigo pots in various stages of readiness.

Yarns dyed with natural dyes and hung up for drying

This co-op has traditionally made poleng, the black and white checked cloth you see all over Bali, adorning statues and worn by some men. They revived their history and are now making it in the traditional way and are now selling to locals as well as to the tourist market. It's nice to see the Balinese looking for a quality woven product for use in every day life.

Fiona, Julia and Eleri with our purchases out the front of the weavers at Seraya.

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