Weaving for Life Design and Motifs in the Inabel of Bontoc Weaver Respondents in Baguio City

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Ruth S. Batani


Weaving and woven products in their present form have taken on interesting transformations over the years. Among indigenous women in the city of Baguio, weaving has taken on new energies with the invention of designs and new colors while at the same time retaining the ethnic motif. Using key informant interviews on Bontoc women weavers, the study draws attention to the artistic output of the weavers that are responding to identity construction at the same time satisfying market demands. Findings show that women weavers, at least in their generation, despite the meaningfulness of traditional designs on their woven fabrics, have also appropriated new designs and colors as part of their negotiations in the market. Other institutional market demands have also influenced the presentation of their woven products. Women weavers were able to negotiate their ‘ethnic motif’ in the market, while at the same time meeting the challenges of the exclusivist character of ‘ukay-ukay.’

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