The Kuna Women Traditional Dress:
The Kunas (also spelled Cunas) Indians of Panama live on a tropical paradise known as "the San Blas Islands" off the northeast coast of Panama since the nineteenth century. One of the most important native groups in Panama that contribute substantially to his Economy and offer the most beautiful work of arts.
The Kunas are well known for their molas, the term molas means "blouse" "dress" or "clothing", it also refer to the stitched panel front and back of the blouse. Making a mola is not only a past time but it is an important source of income for the Kuna family.
The Kuna dress is one of the most beautiful dresses in the world, just recently a Panamanian Lady won a best skirt award: she wore a mola inspired skirt showing the magnificient work of the Kuna Indians of San Blas, Panama.
The traditional dress is also an essential part of their cultural identity and the dress consist of a blouse with short, puffy sleeves, cut out of beautiful printed fabric, into which, the extraordinary mola panels are set in the front and back of the blouse.
The mid-lenght skirt, the saburete, is a rectangle of fabric wrapped around the waist, the fabric has some beautiful desings and the background is green or blue.
The head scarf is draped over a woman's short hair but can also be folded and carried over the shoulder, the scarf is also known as muswe, this is a panel of bright red fabric with some beautiful yellow designs.
The wini or the long string of beads is wrapped around the forearms and calves, the most common colors are orange, yellow and black, but it can also come in a variety of colors and when they are wrapped around it forms a beautiful traditional geometric desing.
Their dress is completed with a small gold ring through the nose, earrings, necklaces and gold rings on their fingers.
Their cheeckbones are highlighted with annatto fruit, it has an orange-red color, and the woman's also use the jagua juice to draw a black line from the base of the forehead along the bridge of the nose to the tip.
Shoes: the woman's wear any pair of sandals.
Source: Rita Smith, www.molaartandcraft.com
, e-mail: [email protected]
The price of these beautiful molas is increasing through the years, the mola is becoming more popular and has a positive acceptance internationally. Molas can be found on the borders of Colombia (Northwest Mountains of Colombia) in the Darien Rainforest, however these molas are not the same "quality" "stitching" as the molas made by the Kuna Indians of San Blas located within Panama. I only sell handmade molas from San Blas Islands-Panama.
To learn more about the Kunas Social organization, Daily life, Food Preparation,Music, song and dance, Language I suggest to buy the book Molas and Kuna Traditions it is available on my website. The book will help you understand their Traditions and Culture, illustrated with several pictures.
Don't forget to check my site, I listed new items that are perfect for a Christmas Gift.