Lebanon, Kinship Stories, Kuchi Comb
Varies depending on the way it is worn
Name: Kuchi Comb
Collection: Celebrating Art and Supporting Artisanship
Cultures: India, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Turkey, Mali and Egypt.
This handmade tribal art necklace comprises a variety of cultures and carries, between its beads & threads, historical evidence of a world on the verge of extinction.
The base of this necklace is made with a Hindu rosary, known as japamala. Comprised of natural Rudshakra brown nut seeds, it is used for prayer within Hindu cultures.
The fabric tassels on the right are Turkoman. They are around 60-80 years old and they were once attached to the braids of an Afghani woman, mostly as decoration but also to show off her riches. These tassels in particular are quite precious. Boasting a museum quality, they belong to a generation of tassels on the verge of extinction.
On top of the tassels are vintage spindle clay beads from Mali. Originally used as part of an equipment to create threads, such beads are now increasingly used as decorative articles and as beads in their own right.
The leather tassel on the left is from Egypt. It is made with artisanal hand-scrapped, tanned and braided camel leather from Northern Egypt, with beaded adornments.
The centerpiece is a spectacular, rare vintage Kuchi comb from Afghanistan. Made with metal, it espouses the aesthetic characteristics of this tribe, which still roams Afghanistan and is well known for its beautiful textiles and metal work. Around the centerpiece are Yemeni mixed silver beads. They are around 60 to 80 years old and they come from a larger bridal necklace. Today, these beads are increasingly rare to find, as they belong to a world that disappeared with the latest wars in the region.
The coins are antique Ottoman. They were once attached to the scarf of a Bedouin woman, somewhere in the Levant, around 150 years ago. Women from the region always preferred to carry their riches on their bodies –both to show off and to protect their money.
The crochet flowers, on the other hand, are Turkish oyas, or handmade lace flowers from the region of Anatolia. Anatolian women are well-known for their beautiful oyas, often adorning the rims of scarves and clothes in the country.
This necklace is entirely handmade, one-of-a-kind piece. It carries the stories of local cultures slowly disappearing in today's global world. Just like you, the person wearing it today, it signifies the beauty of staying true to oneself while embracing other cultures.