This piece is described as a "cradle" and the
design features indicate a likely SW Persian Khamseh production. These
cradles are not common. From the wear at the corners and in the field, you
could imagine that they did not survive too many babies and few remained
intact to make it to market.
It is 31" wide by 39" long. 78x96cm
is a delight for tassel lovers. The tassels make it impractical for floor
use, although it is possible that these pieces were used on the floor in
the west. All four corners have damage, a clue that shows it was hung from
the corners when in use.
Here is the back, showing that it is
not a "reversible" fabric:
It is constructed, from the top, of
round braided ends from gathered warps, then two-color chained rows
divided by rows of twining.
As the chained rows turn into columns at
the sides, the construction of these vertical borders is vexing. I have
not determined how they are made.
Then, a border with two rows of pick
and pick two-color bands and triangles of diagonal-wrapping.
two more rows of twining and then the major S border with diagonal
wrapping and soumak S designs.
Then comes another triangle border.
soumak and diagonal wrapping outline the field of diamonds floating in a
lattice of dark-blue on a red plain-weave ground. The whites are
This is the back of the S
And the back of the field:
In case you think that
this is just a one-off design, guess again. Here are a couple more pieces
of chanteh-size with the same S border and likely Khamseh origin. They
both have the unusual vertical columns at the sides. Here is the face of
the first piece:
And the reverse:
Here you can see the chained
row turning into the unusual vertical column:
And the countered soumak field, along
with the complementary-weft white flowers below:
The final piece is another
chanteh, with both faces in flatweave of different designs. The upper face
has the same totemic weapon-like objects in a dark blue countered soumak
field as the piece above, and the lower face is a chevron
This is the reverse:
And this shows a
closer view of the upper half, from the back:
These three pieces exhibit a number
of similarities, including the odd vertical two-color columns which
originate from chained horizontal rows and the enigmatic S border which
has also been found in what have been ascribed to Afshar and also Khamseh
weavers. I would call them "S" Group weavings, but that moniker has
already been taken by some minor-league, inexpensive Turkmen weavings.