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87/1526 Torba (tent bag), knotted pile weave, wool, by Tekke Turkmen woman, Turkmenistan, Central Asia, 1850-1900. Click to enlarge.

Torba (tent bag) by Tekke Turkmen women

This small tent bag or torba, sometimes also called a djollar, is a fine example of Tekke Turkmen weaving made for use by the weaver herself or her tribe. Bags like this were used to store household items within their tents. The Tekke people belong to one of a number of tribes of the nomadic Turkmen who, in the 19th century, inhabited that region of central Asia generally bounded by the Caspian Sea in the west and the Oxus River in the east.

The highly decorative face of the tent bag …


Object No.


Object Statement

Torba (tent bag), knotted pile weave, wool, by Tekke Turkmen woman, Turkmenistan, Central Asia, 1850-1900

Physical Description

Rectangular tent bag or torba, open across the top with fold-over reinforcement and a long wool fringe attached to the bottom edge. The decorative face of the bag features a Tekke Turkmen pattern worked in knotted pile using naturally dyed wool in red, blue, brown and orange with white accents on undyed ivory wool warps. The back of the bag is undecorated flat-weave in ivory wool and the fringe has alternating bands of orange, red and blue. The bag is missing its original side cords and there is some moth damage but the piece is in otherwise excellent condition.


No marks



810 mm


1200 mm



The design of the face of the tent bag features six guls (the major ornament of the field) alternating with a secondary design surrounded by a triple border, and is worked in mottled reds, dark blue, brown and white with touches of orange/yellow. Vegetable dyes have been used. The bag is hand woven in typically Tekke fashion using the asymmetrical knot on relatively flat, rather than depressed, warp threads of fine undyed ivory wool. The backing cloth is original, using the same warps as the face; the fringe is probably also original, although this is more difficult to ascertain as it has been attached separately.



Purchased by the Oriental Rug Society of NSW from Nomadic Rug Traders, Sydney for donation to the Powerhouse Museum collection.


Credit Line

Gift of Oriental Rug Society Of New South Wales, 1987

Acquisition Date

7 December 1987

Cite this Object


Torba (tent bag) by Tekke Turkmen women 2021, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 27 October 2021, <>


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