The Ethiopian traditional costume (mostly in northern Ethiopia), is made of woven cotton. Ethiopian men and women wear this traditional costume called gabbi or Netella. Women often wear dresses (Kemis) and netella with borders of coloured embroidered woven crosses, but other designs are also used.
Weaving (Shimena) is done traditionally to make all types of beautiful Ethiopian traditional clothes. The final cloth produced depends on the choice of threads used, color of threads and also choice of pattern. Weaving equipment is operated by a single person at a time. There are different parts (components) of this equipment. One part is through from side to side by hand. It is called "Mewerweria". There is also another part which needs to be moved up and down alternatively to interweave the threads, this is operated by foot. That is how a fabric is made in Ethiopia in a traditional way. There are different setups of this weaving equipment. Currently a convenient version of the equipments is also being introduced, because of the growing demand of the fabrics.
Improving the technology will improve the quality of the product and make traditional weaving more profitable. The objective of the project as stated by project initiator is to:
- Redesign of Esu Flying hand loom with some improvement of let off motion, take of motion and the bench design to reduce ergonomics problems of the weaver
- Analyze the performance of improved Esu Flying Hand Loom package with respect to the existing hand loom by experience weavers.
- Manufacture modified hand loom with standard material as a model for hand loom cluster for the benefit of micro and small enterprises
- Produce “Fash and Tibeb” with this new modified hand loom by making some improvement.
Improved hand loom is a piece of original work (Fig below) and Ethiopian Science and Technology has given the intellectual property (IP) recognition letter. We congratulate Mr. Esubalew for his hard work and his initiative to further improve his hand loom technology.
Fig: Designing and Fabrication of Modified hand loom