A royal blue silk shawl handwoven on a bamboo loom in the workshop of Carol Cassidy in Vientiane, Laos, showcases the weaving techniques of interlocking tapestry, supplementary weft patterning and weft ikat. The shawl is an adaptation of designs used in Lao villages by the country’s many ethnic groups for whom textiles traditionally have been an important element of family life, identifying the group and locale and marking life’s events from birth to marriage to death. This piece was produced early in the 1990s not many years after Ms Cassidy established her company, Lao Textiles, which since has become known among textile collectors worldwide. Photographs of silk weavings from this workshop and illustrations of the process of producing them can be seen in “Beyond Tradition: Lao Textiles Revisited,” Museum of the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, N.Y., 1995, a catalogue from one of many textile exhibits that have celebrated the work. A collectible piece that will last a lifetime, this shawl may be washed (use of a basic hair shampoo such as Prell is recommended) and will maintain its graceful drape and soft sheen. It is in perfect condition and measures 83" (211 cm) in length (including fringe) and 31” (79 cm) in width. The tapestry sections at each end are 3 ½” (9 cm) wide.