The Inabel of Ilocos
The inabel is one of the many prides of the Ilocos region in the Philippines. “Abel” is the Ilocano word for weave, and “inabel” can be interpreted to mean any kind of woven fabric. In the world of weaving however, inabel is particularly used to refer to textile that is distinctly Ilocano in origin. We are proud to offer these inabel wovens from Laoag weavers in Ilocos.
Recognising the famous artwork weaving in Ilocos region is like an artist who known by many people. That's why to keep the tradition alive the younger generation of Ilocanos are being encouraged to keep the tradition of inabel still alive. Their product is made up of pure cotton and mixed with poly - cotton to improve the durability of the product they made.
Abel is Ilocano for “weave,” and inabel literally means “woven.” You can interpret inabel as pertaining to any kind of woven fabric, but it is mostly used to refer to that distinctly Ilocano textile of plain or patterned woven cotton made in hardwood looms using techniques passed down through generations.
Ilocos weavers use hardwood pedal looms, employing different design techniques. The binakul pattern, a dizzying pattern, is meant to ward off and distract evil spirits, protecting the wearer. Other patterns include the multi-heddle design technique, the pinilian or brocade weave, the suk-suk or discontinuous supplementary weft technique, and the ikat tie-dye technique. Each province has its own distinct design style. As with other forms of handweaving in the country, the process of creating inabel is intricate and labor-intensive. Popular patterns include cat's paws, fans, stars, and windows.