Turkish Peştemal

Buldan textile production

History about Buldan Peştamal and Cloth

The small town Buldan has been a very important center of Turkey’s textile industry, a tradition it actively pursues to this day, still largely based on independent craftspersons.

Sanjak (subprovince) of Denizli was the most vibrant center cloth production center in western Anatolia during the later 19th century and the fame of the region rested at the time on the output of two of depending large villages, Buldan and Kadıköy, as well as the neighboring town of Babadağ.

Buldan was famed for a thin handwoven cheesecloth-type fabric, with laced edges and used chiefly for bed covers and table cloths, called as “Buldan bezi” (Buldan clothes) under the name of locality. Already back in the 19th century, the townspeople wove 40,000 pieces of all-cotton colored striped cloth used called alaca used for attires and a similar number of cotton and mattress clothes. Buldan weavers also produced over one-half million handkerchiefs and a large number of cotton curtains. Another textile from Buldan that deserves mention is a vivid violet silk (peştemal) woven as a rectangular panel to be wrapped around the body. Yet another is kaplama, colorful head coverings typical of Turkey’s Aegean Regin and worn by men and women alike with different colors associated with each gender and various regions. Thanks to sizable production effort, the number of looms in Buldan had risen to 1,500 by the end of the 19th century.

The town’s expertise reaches further back in time and a sign at the town entry greets visitors with the pride expressed for having woven the kaftan of Beyazid I the Thunderbolt for his marriage with Hafsa Hatun, daughter of Aydinid İsa Bey, in 1390. Tripolis (Phrygia) itself, a first century AD Roman foundation, may have had the weaving industry as its reason for coming into existence.
17th century Ottoman documents also mention Buldan’s importance as a textile production center, informing that until circa 1650s, the cotton cloth woven in Buldan, Denizli and Manisa was taken to Tire for dyeing, after which time that part of the operation also started to be handled locally.

producing pestamal

All fabrics have passed the EU AZO Dye Testing, Textile Testing for carcinogen and allergens in Turkey.

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