Hand woven fabric is very closely to the people's lives in Bali. The woven fabrics are widely used in rituals as wastra (cloth for the sake of ritual). In addition, weaving is also a source of income for most residents, other than income from their main job. The art of weaving has been handed down by the ancestors for generations.
Several production centers of weaving in Bali have its own characteristics, unique motifs, and the awesome beauty of colors. Cepuk Woven or 'Tenun Cepuk' Bali is one type of weaving typical of Bali, which is widely used for the sake of ritual and also as a source of income for citizens. The making process is loaded with local wisdom and keeps environmental harmony. This woven fabric is produced by society in Tanglad Village, District of Nusa Penida, Klungkung Regency, Bali.
Tenun Cepuk Bali - Local Culture & Supernatural Shield
The word 'cepuk' in the Balinese dictionary is defined as 'meet', 'come across' or 'find'. The meaning of the word is strongly associated with the use of Cepuk fabric in a meeting event that involves a lot of people, such as: tooth-filing ceremonies, weddings and death ceremonies.
Cepuk fabric is commonly used by the specialist of offerings (ritual offerings or tukang banten), shaman (traditional healers), and also in the Balinese dances such as Barong and Rangda Dance, Joged Dance, Baris Dance, Trance Dance and others. Besides that, the Cepuk is also used as 'rantasan', a fabric which is dedicated to the gods to be used in certain rituals.
Local culture is very convinced that the tenun cepuk Bali has miraculous powers as a supernatural shield (protective shield or buffer). The Cepuk fabric users will feel protected from the effects of negative energy. This woven fabric is also used as a medium to communicate with the divine to seek their guidance, provide them with gifts and utilize their power for healing purposes.
At first, Cepuk is used as a 'tapih cloth'. Tapih Cloth is a fabric that used as the innermost layer, then coated with a layer of cloth outside. Cepuk hand woven fabric consists of several types of use, adjusted for ritual or religious ceremonies as follows:
Cepuk Ngawis, is a cepuk fabric used during the ceremony Pitra Yajna (Cremation).
Cepuk Tangi Gede, a cepuk fabric that is used by the middle child which all his older and younger brothers died (cremation ceremony).
Cepuk Liking Paku, a cepuk fabric that is worn by men in the Tooth Filing ceremony.
Cepuk Kecubung, a cepuk fabric that is used by women in the Tooth Filing ceremony.
Cepuk Sudamala, a cepuk fabric used for self-cleaning.
Cepuk Kurung is the cepuk fabric that can be used on a typical day.
Basic Structure of a Kamben Cepuk (Motif Tenun Cepuk)
Cepuk fabric has a captivating beauty with the dominant background of deep red, brick-red or brownish red, against the geometric and floral weft ikat designs. It's set within a strict framing structure of monochrome stripes and bands and ikat section. there are also anothe colors such as white, yellow, blue and black.
In addition, the cepuk woven fabric is also famous for its structures and motifs. Each cepuk fabric has the same structural principle, which consists of: vertical side borders (g), horizontal end panels (a), and the centerfiled (n). Each of them is arranged in a succession of bands and stripes. The vertical side borders, horizontal end panels, and centerfield are made up of a number of smaller elements. Each of which has a Balinese name.
Vertical side borders are termed as "eled" or head (g), consist of smaller element as follows:
#Outer Border or "bibih" an outer border or the end of the fabric (h)
#Lines or "serati" a line motif that became the dividing motif (j)
#Section of Space or "pelokan" a space flanked by serati (k)
#Smile (Ikat Bands) or "kejung" a motif that is flanked by serati (m)
Horizontal end panels are termed as "bibih" or whole side border (a) Consist of smaller element as follows:
#Selvedge or "bibih" is a woven edge portion (b)
#Grasshopper Legs or "batis balang", a motif which is located after the Selvedge, in the form of three fine strips (c)
#Soft Slope or "tembing manis", in the form of two fine blue lines (d)
#Socle (Eyebrows) or "ganggong" (alis kening) is the motive of the eyebrows (e)
# Barong's Teeth or "Gigin Barong", a dominant triangular design, resembling arrowhead motif flanked by ganggong (f).
While the centerfield is located in the middle, flanked horizontally by "bibih" (a) and vertically by "eled" (g), is the overall ikat design.
Cepuk Woven Fabric Bali & Balinese Ikat Weaving
The process of Cepuk hand weaving is starting from yarn processing. This thread processing phase is an important part of Balinese ikat weaving, the thread will be tied to a specific section to form the desired motif. Yarn will be tied with strong, thick and neat so that it can be a good color barrier. Furthermore, the thread that has been tied going through the process of coloring, dipped in natural dye ingredients taken from nature. The use of natural dyes will reduce the use of synthetic dyes and reducing the negative impact on the environment.
Coloring process begins from the darkest color to the lightest color. After the first coloring, specify the parts of threads to be colored, release the color barrier, and dip it in the other dye (lighter color), thus forming a second color and so on. After the coloring process is finished, the thread can be dried.
Furthermore the 'lungsing' thread stretched on the Alat Tenun Bukan Mesin (ATMB or non-mechanized), arranged in parallel and static, according to color of thread and the width of the fabrics desired. The lungsing thread installation process is known as 'Penghanian'. For the weft threads that have passed through the dyeing process repeatedly, rolled up, and inserted transversely on the sidelines lungsing thread. The colors on the weft and lungsing will form a motif on the sheet of Cepuk woven fabric Bali.
Cepuk fabric is related with Canging Wood and Secang Wood. Canging Wood is the tree species of dadap, thorny tree, the flowers red colored and odorless. The tree is also known as the cangkring wood or purple coral tree (Erythrina fusca). While Secang Wood (Caesalpinia sappan) is a kind of small trees or shrubs, the stems are protrusions resembling teeth and have a lot of thorns. Both the wood (Canging and Secang) is used as a natural dye that is red. Canging Wood also produces fibers or bast fiber, which is widely used in the textile industry (yarn, rope, etc.).
- wikipedia.org _ Balinese Textiles _ on November 2, 2016
- Daredia, Nabila. (Spring 2012). "Negotiated Power of Sacred Balinese Textiles - How Identity Animates the Inanimate" (PDF). BFA Candidate, Fiber Arts. Retrieved on November 2, 2016.
- Coleman, H., (Edited by Hann, M. A.). (2008). "Patterns of Culture - The Textiles of Bali and Nusa Tenggara" (PDF). No. 38 in the Ars Textrina Series. University of Leeds International Textiles Archive (ULITA). ISBN: 978-0-9549640-4-7. Retrieved on November 2, 2016.
- Image : Original Collection