The author has travelled throughout Nepal in search of its rich and varied textiles. In the lowland valleys and the Himalaya middle mountains, she has recorded traditional techniques, photographed weavers at work and collected examples of their craft. Until the overthrow of the Rana regime in 1951, the Kingdom of Nepal had little contact with the outside world. Consequently, the people continued with their 1000-year-old techniques and the cloth retained a distinctly Nepalese character. Dunsmore has examined manuscripts and carvings for the earliest evidence of textiles, and shows, for example, that the nettle cloth still made today, is praised in the ancient epic of "Ramayana" for its beauty and fineness. The book contains illustrations of looms and spindles of all kinds, descriptions of the subtle natural dyes, and a survey of the raw materials used. While some of the techniques shown here may vanish with the effect of fresh influences upon Nepal, new traditions are already developing. The author shows the impact made by a wider range of colour and yarns, including silk, and the fibres of the Himalayan Giant Nettle. Susi Dunsmore is also the author of "Weaving in Nepal" and "The Nettle in Nepal".
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