Variations in Loom Construction


Variations in loom construction exist as a result of variations in access to technological improvements, weaving types, and cash access. A loom at its most basic is one step up from a back-strap loom. Here the weavers in Kam Pong Speu use the loom to weave cotton mix kroma. These are for resale in the local and Phnom Penh markets. Compared to these looms being constructed to provide full width (1 to 1.4 m width) silk. These looms are part of the "Caisse de Development Francaise" efforts to bring Cambodian silk weaving in line with international cloth standards.

Here Mrs. Som weaves the beautiful, but uneven thread produced in the village of Kam Pong Speu. Kam Pong Speu is one of seven villages who participate in Khemara's rural development program. This loom produces material which is only 70 cm in width. It is left in its natural state without dyeing and has no design. Traditionally this silk was woven for home use. When it is finished the women dye it black and in the village it is worn by older women in the family.

The ikat design is typically produced on the more advanced looms and primary production is in Kam Pong Cham and Takeo. Here the production of silk thread no longer takes place and the women weave thread imported from Vietnam and Thailand.
Please click here if you would like to see the silk growing revitalization efforts.
Click here for weaving techniques
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Last updated on April 1, 1996.
© 1996 Katharine Wardle