al-Hiba: Dyers

Date: 1960s

Dyeing is undertaken once skeins have been prepared (see: Spinners). Women who weave carpets are the principal dyers in the village. Previously, vegetable dyes were used, however, Ochsenschlager observed dyers using industrial dyes imported from Germany or Poland. They use crystal or powder dyes, both of which are water soluble. For the dyeing large vessels are held on mud supports over dung-paddy fires. Once the dyes have dissolved in boiling water the skeins are put in and stirred for five to ten minutes. They are then left until nearly dry, rinsed, and hung to dry. See also: Loom Maker; Maker of Spindles; Weaver; Yarn Spinner; Woven Spinner and Knitter; Wool Weaver; Spinner.

Citation: Ochsenschlager, Edward. Iraq’s Marsh Arabs in the Garden of Eden (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, 2004), pp. 219-21.