Antique Baluch Balisht, Khorassan Province, North-East Persia. ...

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A 'balisht' is the Persian word for 'pillow-bag' - stuffed with cotton and used in daily nomadic life to lounge on or to place your head on whilst sleeping. This beautiful balisht, which I acquired today, was made by Baluch nomads in Khorassan, north-east Persia circa 1900 and is in near-mint condition with its original plain-weave back.
Size: 79cm x 46cm (2' 7" x 1' 6").
| $1,265 USD | €1,076 EUR

Antique Vanity-Bag, Qashqa'i Nomads, Fars Province, South-West ...

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This superb vanity-bag ('chanteh' in Persian) has been in our collection for many years but now it's time for someone else to enjoy it as we have done. Made by Qashqa'i nomads in Fars, south-west Persia at the end of the 19th century, the bag is complete with knotted-pile face incorporating the 'continuous knot' symbolising the eternal cycle of life and a fabulous back, brocaded in soumack technique. Bags like this are now incredibly rare and few of this age exist amongst the Persian nomads today.
Size: 26cm x 23cm (10" x 9").
| $1,132 USD | €963 EUR

Antique Baluch Chanteh (Vanity-Bag), Mahdad Khani Nomads, ...

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Double-sided knotted pile vanity-bags (chanteh) are rare. This one was found in Mashad, north-eastern Iran in 2001 and dates to the early 20th century. It was made, I suspect, by Mahdad Khani Baluch nomads and is in excellent condition.
Size: 36cm x 34cm (1' 2" x 1' 1").
| $999 USD | €850 EUR

Antique Kurdish Vanity-Bag (chanteh), Sanjabi Sub-Tribe, Kurdistan. ...

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My love of 19th century vanity-bags ('chanteh' in Persian) has always been a passion since I first set eyes on one back in the 1980s. However many I've handled since then, I have rarely found one made by the Kurds. I have just acquired this gorgeous little chanteh, made by Sanjabi Kurds towards the latter part of the 19th century. The bag is woven in a technique known as extra weft wrapping which gives it a very strong and resilient feel. The back is woven in plain-weave with only some slight staining which I hope to have removed when it is washed.
Size: 23cm x 20cm (9" x 8").
| $732 USD | €623 EUR

Antique Balisht, Baluch Tribes, Khorassan Province, North-East ...

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The wool quality in this 'balisht' is soft and lustrous. Of course it had to be, as the 'balisht' was a pillow-bag for resting one's head on at night and for lounging on during the day. Balishts are quite different from grain-bags which were much coarser in weave and wool quality and used for harder work. Many antique balishts found today have had their backs removed by unscrupulous dealers who thought they had a better chance of selling them as small floor rugs! This beautiful example is complete with original plain-weave back, made by Baluch nomads around 1900 with a natural camel-hair field.
Size: 89cm x 43cm (2' 11" x 1' 5").
| $732 USD | €623 EUR

Antique Kordi Tribal Bag-face, Quchan Region, Khorassan ...

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This beautiful weaving was made by Kordi tribes in the Quchan region of north-east Persia circa 1900. The colours are beautifully vegetable and the soumak weave is fine and superbly executed. As mentioned in the previous description, I'm not convinced such pieces were made as 'balishts' (pillow-bags) as the weave is not condusive to laying one's head on! Therefore, I suspect they were dowry pieces, showing the prowess of the weaver as a desirable wife, and they might have been simply decorative to these nomads. Today, in the western world, they can also be decorative - used to cover a chest or table-top.
Size: 69cm x 36cm (2' 3" x 1' 2").
| $499 USD | €425 EUR

Antique Ceremonial Silk Band, Lakai-Uzbeks, Uzbekistan.

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This beautiful silk embroidered band was made by Lakai-Uzbeks for a possible ceremonial purpose and therefore must have been a highly-prized possession.
The weaver was highly skilled to produce such incredibly fine silk embroidery. The back of the band is covered in old Russian cloth. Possibly early 20th century.
Size: 3.05m x 10cm (10' 0" x 4")
| $499 USD | €425 EUR

Antique Rifle-Cover, Baluchi or Kochi Nomads, Afghanistan. ...

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Acquired in Afghanistan, this rare and beautifully embroidered rifle-cover, made by either Baluchi or Kochi nomads. The embroidery is fine and delicate and it contains a multitude of tiny glass mirrors and beadwork. Rifle-covers are rare and very collectable.
Size: 1.12m x 17cm at the butt end (3' 8" x 7").
| $499 USD | €425 EUR

Antique Half Saddle-Bag, Baluch Tribes, North-East Persia. ...

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A charming and relatively rare half saddle-bag with an indigo-blue field of cockerels - symbolically the harbinger of the day and dispeller of the night. The bag is in fairly good condition although it has seen wear during quite possibly, a hard life! The back is missing but otherwise complete all round with lappits at the very top. Bags made by the Baluch with cockerels in the field are considered quite rare and collectable. This bag is by no means 'best of type' but charming nevertheless, and this is reflected in the price.
Size: 71cm x 69cm (2' 4" x 2' 3").
| $499 USD | €425 EUR

Antique Salt-Bag, Afshar Nomads, Kerman Province, South ...

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A large and attractive salt-bag (namakdan) of the Afshar nomads, made circa 1900.
Size: 69cm x 53cm (2' 3" x 1' 9").
| $366 USD | €312 EUR

Antique Vanity-Bag, Baluch Tribes, Khorassan, North-East Persia. ...

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This small vanity-bag (chanteh) is complete and in knotted-pile on both faces. Made around the early 20th century, the bag is in excellent condition.
Size: 37cm x 33cm (14" x 13").
| $233 USD | €198 EUR

Antique Turkmen Mafrash, Ersary Tribes, Northern Afghanistan. ...

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This little mafrash (personal belongings bag), woven in brocade technique with plain-weave cotton back was made during the early 20th century. The bag is in very good condition.
Size: 81cm x 36cm (2' 8" x 1' 2").
| $200 USD | €170 EUR