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A pua kumbu is a traditional tribal textile woven in longhouses by the women of Borneo. They have great value, playing an important role in tribal culture. Throughout the world, weavers create patterns reflecting their cultural background and influences from their surroundings, but unique to the Iban is the impact that dreams have in the creation of pua kumbu. Each unique pua design is created from a vast repertoire of individual motifs whose meanings are combined to produce patterns and stories of ritual and spiritual power. Traditionally, the weaving goddess Kumang gives the designs and patterns to the weaver through dreams. Pua kumbu are known as Woven Dreams! Typically lots of symbolic elements are included in the design. Many are woven to play a specific role in celebrations and ritual ceremonies. In the old days heads were wrapped in certain pua. Master weavers were held in great esteem and only they were allowed to use certin powerful motifs.

Pua are traditionally woven of cotton on backstrap looms. The warp is dyed after areas to remain undyed are isolated using tight wrapping with cord and cloth. Many sessions are required depending on the number of colors used.  Dye composition and technique is closely guarded.

Edric has worked with the women at Rumah Garie longhouse, on the River Kain in interior Sarawak, accessible only by longboat, to adapt silk yarn to their traditional cotton pua techniques with outstanding success. For this they have won a coveted Seal of Excellence from UNESCO, given for outstanding craftsmanship and traditional techniques.

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