Textiles of the Islamic World


An unrivalled, comprehensive, lavishly illustrated survey providing a wealth of information on the rich art of Islamic textiles


ISBN: 9780500290835 Category:

John Gillow


This book surveys the astonishing array of textiles made, worn, used and displayed throughout the Islamic world, from the glorious fabrics of the past to those still being produced today. Hundreds of lavish illustrations feature examples from around the globe, including embroidered Persian prayer cloths, Anatolian ikat coats, Ottoman knitted purses, Caucasian striped silk bags, Berber women’s shawls, Arab appliqu├ęd tent decorations, Yemeni indigo robes, Indonesian batik sarongs, West African strip-woven cloths, and much else besides.

Region-by-region coverage offers concise details of local history, particular textile traditions, materials, dyes, special forms of decoration and information on current practice. Also explored is the fascinating fusion promoted by the merchants, missionaries, migrants and conquerors who travelled the world promulgating Islam and trading textiles widely.

The sheer variety on display is stunning, from cloths of cotton, hemp, linen and wool to sumptuous velvets and silks; from techniques of quilting, felting, beading and knitting to block-printing, tie-dyeing and hand-weaving on a range of looms.

Specially taken colour photographs, portraits of weavers and dyers in action, and rare historical material complete a remarkable visual panorama. Together with a glossary, bibliography and guide to textile collections around the world, this comprehensive survey provides a wealth of information and will be invaluable to anyone interested in the rich art of textiles, costume or craft.

Additional information

Weight 2000 g
Dimensions 24.3 x 31.3 cm
Publisher name Thames and Hudson Ltd
Publication date 12 March 2013
Number of pages 320
Format Paperback / softback
Dimensions 24.3 x 31.3 cm
Weight 2000 g


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John Gillow has spent over thirty years studying, collecting and lecturing on textiles. His books include Arts and Crafts of India (with Ilay Cooper and Barry Dawson), Indian Textiles (with Nicholas Barnard), Traditional Indonesian Textiles, World Textiles (with Bryan Sentance) and African Textiles.