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Very rare Mid Century Wedding Blanket from the Ma’dan (Marsh Arab) community in southern Iraq. Circa 1960's. 220cm x 146cm.


Known in Iraq as Izar-as-Samawa, these blankets were not widely traded and remain very hard to come by. They are made by sewing two lengths of a reddish twill ground together then embroidering over the top in chain stitch using a crochet hook and are always pretty much identical in size.


This is a really pretty example, very densely embroidered with figural and zoomorphic elements in a joyful palette of pinks and oranges. Condition is great, some very small loose threads and some colour fading (The visible twill base at the ends has a huge amount of lovely colour variation). Some loose stitches to one end where the base twill has been joined. Overall a solid, useable and very decorative piece. Lots more images available here


The Ma’dan people were heavily persecuted by the Iraqi regime, their marshland home being drained in 1991 as punishment for harbouring rebels, resulting in the traditional culture and lifestyle being abandoned. Though there has been some recent reintroduction of traditional rug and blanket weaving, these beautiful textiles haven’t been produced for around 40 years. You can read more about these textiles and the people behind them here.


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Iraqi Wedding Blanket Izar-as-Samawa

  • We are happy to accept returned items if they arrive damaged or are not as described. No other reason will guarantee a refund. Please study images carefully, they count as part of the description. We are happy to supply additional information and images on request

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