Friday, June 05, 2009

Of Uzbekistan: Potatoes and Prints

These pictures are from the main market area in Tashkent. There is a big and somewhat organized farmer's market section, with thousands of pounds of potatoes and onions, and then a sprawling collection of tarp-shaded stalls selling household goods and clothes.

The traditional women's attire is of particular note. Most of the women of a certain age wear a suit that looks like pajama pants and a muumuu of matching fabric, and then a scarf around their hair of an often entirely different fabric. Most popular are prints, and the crazier and louder the better. Traditional Uzbek weaving patterns are not exactly subdued. Your correspondent assumes that the advent of synthetics and their even more vibrant colors and elaborate prints were adopted in place of the kind of hippie-looking hand-woven patterns of the olden days. The fact that no effort is apparently made to match the headscarf and the main garment leads to some striking combinations of patterns. A small assortment of fabrics for sale is seen below.

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