Handcrafted Manta de Trapo Alentejanas – Pattern 5

The weaving uses old artisanal manufacturing methods, where the most important work tool is the loom, unchanged through time. The weavers take their place at the warp beam (at the rear end of the loom), push the beater (adding each turn of thread to the fabric) and press down on the pedals, passing the shuttles (holding the yarn) through the warp. The shuttles are the only elements that have changed over time: and now include bearings! This change allows the shuttles to be woven through the warp more quickly and with less effort. Loom weaving was once physically demanding job performed mostly by men. The central part of the loom is formed by a harness. The harness frames the loom, holding the warp threads, fastened by two canes. Weaving patterns are “programmed” by special knots in the warp threads. Fabricaal’s goal is to ensure that this ancient knowledge persists; that it is valued, bringing work and prosperity to the region, generating economic and social sustainability.

Handmade in Portugal. Products may contain imperfections.

Dimensions: Approximately 55 inches x 78 inches

70% Cotton and 30% Other Fibers

Package Contains: 1 Manta

 

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In some places they call a cold night “a three dog night”  kind of night, meaning you need three dogs sleeping with you to keep warm!  In a Portuguese home it would be a Manta kind of night.
I am so lucky that I still have the mantas that my parents brought with them when we came to America.
I love everything about them, from the heavy weight that feels like you’re being hugged to knowing that they were made by hand. I actually see them as works of art.
I was told that the ones I have would have taken a very long time to make. These were not handmade on a loom…instead these were strictly put together and stitched by hand.
The process was taking scraps of fabric remnants and creating long strips. These long strips would have been rolled and sewn together, continually adding to it until you had a bed-sized blanket.
There are still a few places that make mantas by hand the island of Sao Miguel, using the loom. I visit them when I can, but Tecelagem O Linho located in Lombinha da Maia is my must stop… I can honestly say I never leave empty handed. She has a small shop there, but she does takes orders. Make sure you don’t forget to stop by on your next visit!

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