~ These women, are proudly from a tiny island in Micronesia called ‘Satawal’ with only 500 people resided on it. ~
Sunday School Tausala.
Both Represented your Fijian side.
How to Make a Bilum
[This originally appeared in the Lik Lik Buk, a populist development guide produced in Papua New Guinea in the mid-1980s -A]
The bilum is a traditional PNG string bag. Bilums come in a variety of shapes and styles and are made for different purposes. Bilums are made to carry food, to carry babies in and to use for leisure. People can identify a person just by the creative design or style woven on the bilum. Despite the many different aspects and purposes of bilums they all are made from the same basic weaving method.
Bilums are worked by forming rows of a special knot around a strip which today is usually made of plastic packing strips but previously people used coconut and pandanus leaves to make these strips. The strips are used to determine the size of the stitches and help to make the job of holding hte stitches easier. The string is owrked in short lengths as all of the string yet to be used is fed into the existing knots. When the string runs out a new length is tied on to the end.
You will need (beginner):
1. Some coloured string
2. Cut a piece of plastic strip about 60cm or more to form the base row.
3. Cut the other plastic strips about 30cm long. These should be the same width (about 1/2-1 cm)as the longer strip.
4. A pair of scissors
5. One or two needles larger and longer than sewing needles (darning needles). Some people use old spokes from an umbrella. (Traditionally used: Bones from the Flying-Foxes )
1. Make a loop around the plastic strip and tie with a slip knot. Pace one end of string on the front of the plastic strip (that is the side facing you) and hold it down with your thumb at the front and with your forefinger at the back of the plastic strip.
2. Pull the working end over the top and then behind the plastic strip creating a loop at the top of the plastic strip.
3. The working end is brought under the plastic strip and is fed under the other end of the string so that the plastic strip now has a circle of string around it. This mesh must be kept loose enough to be able to feed the subsequent stitches into the loops of the previous ones.
4. The working end goes over the loose end into the top loop from the left side to the right side. It is imortant that the points where the stirng crosses over are kept at the bottom and top of the plastic strip. The working end foes behind the plastic strip and is fed from left to right into the bottom loop.
5. Repeat the procedure until you reach the required length which will be the half the circumference of your bilum.
Bilums consist of a spiral of rows of meshes.
1. Bend the plastic strip backward (away from yourself) and work the stitch in the normal way but over the two palstic strips instead of one.
2. Turn the pastic strip so that the back is now facing you. Make the next stitch over the one plastic strip in the following manner.
3. Take the working end and go over the plastic strip at the front and into the previous stitch at the back from left to right and then into the loop of hte stitch on the rprevious row. Pull the string behind the front plastic strip. Continue until the second row is the same length as the first row. These two rows mae the base of the blium. (if the plastic strip is short slip another strip in).
4. All subsequent rows are made in the smae manner.
5. Continue the procedure until you have 18-20 rows (medium size bilum).
Mouth of the Bilum
1. Get a new piece of string and join it to the ned of the string that you used for making the body of the bilum.
2. Hold the top of the bilum facing you so that you can clearly see the top edge of the stitches forming the top row.
3. Skip the last working stitch of the body of the three loops to the front and feed the string into the thuird loop from left to right. Make a knot. Count three loops and feed the string into the third loop from left to right. From right to left push the string into the knot that you made. Bring the string back towards you forming a circle.
4. Count another three loops in front and feed the string into the third loop. Bring the string back and feed it into the previous circle. Continue around the mouth of the bilum.
5. When the two ends meet feed the last stitch into the first stitch to form a continuous chian. To finish tie a knot and cut the extra string.
Bilum handles are sometimes made separately from the bilum and then joined on. Others are made straight from the side of the bilum. There are many styles but the simplest uses the same basic stitch as in the body of the bilum.
1. Use a shorter plastic strip and make about 8-10 sitthces.
2. Use a second plastic strip. Make the next row using the same stitch.
3. Continue making rows until you reach the length of the handle you want.
Joining the Handle to the Bilum
1. Hold the Bilum up and from the way it hangs judge where the sides are. The handle must be attached to these points so that the bilum when it is carried will be evenly balanced.
2. The handle and the body of the bilum are joined together by looping stitches. It is important that the joining stitches are made into the first row of the bilum not just into the finishing edge of the mouth of the bilum so that your join is strong.
3. When finished, secure with a knot.
Styles and techniques for different patterns are constantly evolving in PNG. This method described above is for a very basic one-colour bilum. Colours can be added by joining different coloured strings to your working string or depending on the complexity of your design are worked in by a method too complicated to explain here. Far better when you have mastered the basics to have someone who know how to show you.
Contributor: Joy Sahumlal, ATDI, Unitech, Lae, MP.
December 01. 2011:
Two police officers were attacked by an armed separatist group in Jayapura early on Thursday morning (01/12).
“At around 1 am this morning our members namely chief brigadier Dian Budi Santosa, chief intelligence of Nimbokrang police precinct and second brigadier Ridwan Napitupulu from an intelligence unit of the Jayapura resort police were attacked while they were conducting observation,” the head of the National Police`s public relations division, Inspector General Saud Usman Nasution, said here on Thursday.The two police officers came to the village after receiving information about unrest there, he said. He said they were attacked with arrows and the two later ran away but Ridwan was caught and beaten up. At around 6am second brigadier Ridwan was saved with wounds found all over his body.
“They have now been evacuated to a hospital in Jayapura. Our team is tracing down the perpetrators,” he said.
Source: ANTARA News
"SENISIM PASIN" long Simbu Province, P.N.G.