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Jewelry and costume items are often stored in baskets or other containers. But, apart from containers for storing jewelry or dresses, also containers for storing other materials of adornment may be found in the West Asian and North African region.
These containers are often ornamented and on occasions they may be worn on the body, or kept in the domain of women. A famous container closely associated with traditional costume is the quteh, a square basket made of reeds and decorated with tassels used for storing embroidery silks and other raw materials used in decorating costume in Palestine (top image on the left). Other containers are hollow gourds used for storing fats or oils for body and hair. Sometimes these items are decorated with leather, cowries and beads to stimulate fertility or to divert evil. This type of containers and decoration dominates the African region.
In Siwa (Egypt) different basketry containers are used to store a woman’s dowry and clothes (center image below). These baskets are always elaborately decorated with tassels, red leather strips, cowries and mother of pearl buttons.
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