Animal Trappings

A man’s horse was often his most prized possession. For special occassions, men decked their horses with large ornamental horse covers, saddle bolsters, headdresses, and bridles – trappings that also imparted prestige to the owner. In 1924, the Austrian adventurer Gustav Krist was befriended by the chief of the Yomut Turkmen and lived with his tribe for a time. He wrote, “Second only to his love of hospitality is the Turkmen’s love for his horse.”

The khans kept stables full of fine horses that they gave as gifts, often with elaborately embroidered trappings that gleamed with gold and silver threads.

The two-humped Bactrian camel was the most common Central Asian camel and they too had their special trappings. In a Turkmen wedding procession, the bride would be ensconsed in a specially constructed tent-like litter atop the camel’s back. Colorful patchwork hangings, or wool-pile weavings hung from the camel’s flanks, while a long trapping, also made of patchwork, rested on the camel’s head and draped down its neck. Small trappings were tied around its knees, often with little bells attached that jingled as the procession moved slowly along.

ANIMAL TRAPPING (ATATBBNB-123)

Central Asia, mid-20th century?

36” wide x 27.5” long (not including fringe)
Silk “atlas” ikat – the rest of the fabrics are cotton
Backed with hand-woven and factory-made cotton cloth
Printed-cotton rag fringe
Entirely hand-sewn
Tears in ikat, otherwise sound

This piece was probably used as an animal trapping of some kind.
The movement of the rag fringe would confuse evil spirits who would fear becoming entangled in it, thus serving as a protective device.

Price: $35.00
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TURKMEN CAMEL TRAPPING (ATATBBNB-122)

Central Asia, late 19th-early 20th century

53.5” x 40.5” (not including fringe)
Felted wool broadcloth and silk hand-woven stripes patches
Backed with local hand-blocked and hand-woven cotton (all the backing sections are pieces of unseamed cloth)
Fair to poor condition; some patches damaged; no moth holes, stains, or color runs
Lots of good period fabrics for restoration projects.

Called a “kuroma”, this trapping was one of a pair that hung down on each of the camel’s flanks in a Turkmen bridal procession. They were usually backed with a variety of different fabrics, such as Russian printed cotton; Turkmen handwoven stripes (alacha); or local block-printed cotton (chit) – as in this example.

This trapping has condition issues, however it still looks attractive enough to display – or if taken apart, can be used to restore other Turkmen pieces.

Price: $75.00
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CAMEL KNEE TRAPPING (ATATBBNB-121)

Turkmen, Central Asia. Late 19th century

20” x 15.5” including rag fringe
Russian red, green, and black wool broadcloth; Uzbek silk ikat
Backed with Russian plain and printed cotton and Central Asian block-printed handwoven cotton
Cotton and wool broadcloth rag fringe
White hand-embroiderd stitches
Fair condition – ikat strips are worn; 1” split on left black wool border; black narrow band along back not original (easily removed) – otherwise everything period 19th century.

This trapping was one of a pair that was tied around each of the camel’s forelegs in a Turkmen bridal procession. Called a “duye dizlyk”, they were often hung with little bells that jingled as the camels walked.

SOLD

Price: $45.00
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ANIMAL TRAPPING (ATATNB-117)

Central Asia, circa 1960s

44.5” x 6” (not including fringe)
Assorted fabrics; plain and printed cottons; artificial silk; jacquards; knits
Backed with plain and printed printed cottons
Cotton rag fringe (average length 7”)
Machine embroidery
Very good condition

This piece was probably used as an animal trapping of some kind.
The movement of the rag fringe would confuse evil spirits who would fear becoming entangled in it. So it served as a protective device.

This would make a decorative hanging – or even a lively sash for belly-dancing, or just for fun.

Price: $30.00
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TURKMEN CAMEL TRAPPING PANELS (ATATBBNB-110)

Tekke Turkmen, Central Asia. Early 20th century

23” x 3.5” (excluding fringe)
Handwoven silk stripes and imported wool broadcloth patches
Silk fringe
Locally block-printed handwoven cotton backing (madder dye)
Good condition – a few small holes; top left triangular patch stained & torn

These pieces made up the side panels of a “kuroma”. A kuroma hung down on each of the camel’s flanks in a Turkmen bridal procession. They were usually backed with a variety of different fabrics, such as Russian printed cotton; Turkmen handwoven stripes (alacha); or local block-printed cotton (chit). A complete kuroma (ATATSC-109) is also available in the ANIMAL TRAPPING bazaar.

A kuroma can be seen in this archival photo from the Library of Congress, taken in 1911. It shows a Tekke Turkmen family dressed in their best clothing sitting inside their tent. Sunlight streams through the opening at the top of the tent making a pattern on the woven-wool floor carpet.

Price: $50.00
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CAMEL KNEE TRAPPING (ATATSC-103)

Turkmen, Central Asia. Late 19th - early 20th century

18” x 17” including rag fringe
Imported wool broadcloth; Russian printed- and solid-color cotton
Hand-embroidered; wool. cotton,and handwoven Turkmen striped fringe; beads
Backed with Russian trade cotton
Good to fair condition
Illustrated in SILK and COTTON, page 248, #3

This trapping was one of a pair that was tied around each of the camel’s forelegs in a Turkmen bridal procession. Called a “duye dizlyk”, they were often hung with little bells that jingled as the camels walked. The small applied triangles and glass beads (especially blue beads) serve as amulets to help ward off evil spirits.

SOLD

Price: $100.00
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CAMEL KNEE TRAPPING (ATBBATNB-112)

Turkmen. Central Asia, 2nd quarter 20th century

16” x 12” (as shown)
Hand-embroidered; wool broadcloth; cotton; handwoven alacha stripes
Wool tassels and braided ties
Fair to good condition; some insect damage to green wool on two hanging side strips

This trapping was one of a pair that was tied around each of the camel’s forelegs in a Turkmen bridal procession. Called a “duye dizlyk”, they were often hung with little bells that jingled as the camels walked. The dangling tassels helped confuse evil spirits and the small applied triangles served as amulets to help ward them off.
The fabrics are all recycled cotton and wool, including handwoven Turkmen stripes.

Price: $30.00
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