Tribal Textiles of Arunachal

The tribes of Arunachal Pradesh have a tradition in which the women folk are involved in weaving. As the warp is dense and usually covers the weft, the woven fabric is thick. The colours and patterns are unique to the rituals and customs of each tribe and community. Combinations of black, red and white are prominently used to weave bold stripes into the fabric by making use of different coloured yarns in the warp which are obtained from natural sources such as barks, roots, leaves and seeds of trees as well as from synthetic dyes and chemicals.

The patterns may vary from the simply designed arrangement of lines and bands to elaborate woven patterns in yellows, greens and scarlet. The patterns are generally symmetrical as more than one width of the fabric is used to weave a garment.

Woven items include Tudung jackets and shawls of the Sherdukpans";" Monpa bags, Apa Tani jackets and scarves";" Adi skirts (galle), jackets, bags and scarves";" Mishmi jackets, shawls, bags and blouses";" Wancho bags, loin cloths and sashes";" Tangsa lungis and bags. Further north, the Monpas, Membas and Bokers also weave woollen jackets, trouser lengths, and blankets.