AUD $320.00

Pashtun, Velvet Serving Cloth.

Lovely old deep burgundy velvet Pashtun serving cloth (mat) for laying on the floor (rug) in front of a guest to serve them food and drinks (traditionally tea.)

Intricately decorated with very skillfully “appliqued” dull gold piping, in extraordinary floral patterns.
The techniqual virtuosity involved in using a sewing machine, to so accurately follow the curving “arabesques” indicates that it was produced in a town or city by a professioal male embroiderer.
(See the reverse to admire the sewing involved, he’s accurately followed every twirl!)
It wouldn’t have been cheap and would have been bought by a rich city dweller rather than a Nomad, who would embroider her own.

It is actually of such a high quality it almost could be Hazara, but I’m led by the protective blue beads on the corner “guls” and hand twisted, multicoloured silk fringe, to think that it is probably Pashtun.
They’ve used other coloured beads too, each group different to complement the colour of that section of fringe.

I also think that it is Afghan, but the Pashtun are also in Pakistan, so I’ll say both.

Once again, either way, whatever its origins, it’s superb.

In very good condition.

Assuming they would traditionally be using gaudy floral “Gardner Ware” teapots and bowls on this embroidered surface, the effect must have been luscious!

I’ve just read in “Colour” (which I highly recommend) that they believed “Gardner” porcelain would protect them from poison, breaking on contact.
(we may still have some of these “Gardnerware” pieces, (repaired ones) to see them just search for teapots.)

Age; Early/Mid 20th Century.

Size: L 86 mm x W 59 mm (including fringe.)

Weight: 723 grams.