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Object Timeline

1925

  • Work on this object ended.

2017

2019

  • You found it!

Pair Of Bags

This is a Pair of bags. We acquired it in 2017. Its medium is silk and metallic embroidery on cotton, cotton backing and its technique is embroidered in satin, stem, and chain stitches on velveteen, discharge printed plain weave backing. It is a part of the Textiles department.

In Kyrgyzstan, the nomadic past is evident in the quantity of collapsible, portable textile furnishings. Textile objects found in Kyrgyz homes include patchwork, embroidered, or appliquéd quilts, saddle bags, pot holders, rugs, clothing, room dividers, and in the case of yurts, tent flaps. These garments and housewares are often made as part of a bride’s dowry; they are later displayed to show wealth and status as well as the talent and skill of the women who have made them. Even urban dwellers often place bedding in a pile covered with large silk textiles, and the walls and doors are draped with a variety of textiles, the most beautiful pieces displayed in a room for receiving guests.
Among the dowry items might be a pair of bags like this embroidered set. Called a mirror bag (oina khalta) and a hairbrush bag (shona khalta), they might also be used to hold soap, needles, thread, thimbles, or other personal items.[i] Much like wall pockets in the European tradition, they would be hung from the lattice framework of the nomadic tent, or the wall of an urban home, as both decorative and functional storage.

This object was donated by Gail Martin.

Cite this object as

Pair Of Bags; silk and metallic embroidery on cotton, cotton backing; 2017-62-1-a,b

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/1158791945/ |title=Pair Of Bags |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=20 October 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>