Palembang Songket fabric – No one can release songket cloth from the archipelago culture. Because the fabric that has a variety of beautiful motifs has long existed. Developed to spread to almost all parts of Indonesia. In fact, the popularity of songket is not only in Indonesia. Other countries such as Malaysia and Thailand also recognize songket cloth culture.

The history of songket cloth traditions

According to history, the existence of songket cloth tradition originally appeared during the Srivijaya Kingdom in Palembang. In the 7th century to the 13th century. According to the Palembang folklore which is also passed down from generation to generation. The beginning of songket cloth came from Chinese traders who brought silk, Indian and middle eastern traders brought gold. Then became gold-plated songket cloth in the hands of Palembang people. The existence of the tradition of songket in Indonesia also associated with the triumph of the Kingdom of Srivijaya.

Palembang Songket fabric
Palembang Songket fabric

Given the long history of Palembang songket, it is not surprising. That songket fabric craftsmen are now increasingly mushrooming in the city of Palembang. Reza, one of the songket craftsmen found in the city of Palembang revealed. Palembang songket fabric has a characteristic on its motives when compared to other traditional fabrics. Palembang songket fabric motifs look more complicated. To produce Palembang songket fabric, a craftsman can even spend three months working on it.

Raw material for Palembang songket fabric

The Palembang songket is made from the original raw silk thread, which before being given a layer of gold is still white. The yarn is then inserted and designed into a weaver which is commonly called a dayan. All parts of Dayan, which are fork and Beliro have their respective functions to pull the yarn, to then be replaced by other threads. And so on until the threads that exist into a single unit to form a motif on songket fabric.

Reza also recounted his experience in making songket, for him using dayan songket cloth can be easily made. But the problem is, if it lacks concentration during manufacturing, such as incorrectly picking up the stick order, then the process must be repeated. If not repeated the motif on the songket cloth will not be formed perfectly. This is what according to Reza makes the price of songket cloth to be expensive, as well as the raw material derived from gold-plated silk.

The price of songket depends on the raw material used. Zainal songket, one of the songket cloth trademarks in the city of Palembang, usually sells songket fabrics ranging from tens of thousands to millions of rupiah. Songket sold is not merely in the form of cloth, but has been applied in various fields of fashion, such as clothing, scarves, and veils. One thing that is interesting, Zainal Songket often produces fabrics using heart thread, namely gold-clad yarn from reproductive old songket. In addition to beautiful, of course, the price of songket fabric made from heart leaves has a selling price of up to hundreds of millions of rupiah. [AhmadIbo / Rich Indonesia]

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