Chapter 6. Costumes

Qolxad or Jile daggers, from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen, or Eritrea

Djibouti Jile

A big dagger with many uses, the Jile is a must wearable for the Afar male, colorful, sharp, and long, strapped to hang above his crotch.

White Punu mask, from Gabon, Africa, Cincinnati Art Museum

White Punu mask

The white mask is carved only by a man, and worn only by a woman, only by the best of dancers, to represent her idealized beauty. Almond eyes, often closed, long thin eyebrows, Her elaborate hairdo is domed high to show she doesn’t need to carry goods on her head. For funerals, her face is painted with white clay to represent an ancestral spirit.

Panama hat, Montecristi, Ecuador

Panama hat

Handwoven Montecristi, Ecuador, from toquilla palm, this hat is light, comforting, and cool. It’s more than a means of keeping sun off the brow. To wear this perfect hat is to be capable of adventure and romance.