Friday, July 17, 2009


Chiton: A chiton is a garment made from an uncut piece of cloth. Other such garments are Dhoti (India), Sarong (Malaysia), and Shuka (Maasai). In order to better understand the cost and importance of cloth in pre-industrial societies and why people might be inclined to search for ways to use entire pieces of cloth, read Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times - a wonderful history of weaving.

A chiton works as follows:
  1. Fold the material in half and hold the fold against the side of the body with half the material in front and the rest behind.
  2. With the fold raised under the arm, bring the front and back over the shoulder and pin. The arm is now through the hole formed by the edge of the material from the fold to the pin.
  3. A little further along the edge bring the front and back over the other shoulder and pin. The neck is now through the hole form by the front and back edge and the two pins.
  4. Finally wrap the extra material under the other arm and attach with a belt or more pins.
As with other garments constructed from a full piece of cloth, this chiton can be adjusted when body shapes and sizes change, and change be rotated to maximize the useful life of the garment.
His face ashen, Acheron picked his chiton up from the ground where the guards had thrown it but didn't have time to dress before they dragged him back into his room and threw him inside.
The man's eyes also widened at the quality of the cloth he wore - a royal chiton Ryssa had insisted he wear whenever he ventured out to the plays.

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