This flask is one part of a five-part ensemble including: dress (thawb_al_sawn) (ZI2021.500946.1 KSA), undergarments (sirwal) (ZI2021.500946.1a KSA), headdress (quba’ah) (ZI2021.500946.1b KSA), and head band (‘usabah) (ZI2021.500946.1c KSA). This outfit was purchased together with two other full outfits, Harb tribe thawb (ZI2021.500946.2 KSA) and Hijazi bridal thawb (ZI2021.500946.3 KSA).
Once our Digital Archive launched in 2019, people began to reach out to donate, sell, or point out interesting outfits and body adornments to The Zay team. When the webinar (Traditional Costumes and Heritage of Saudi Arabia) aired in July of 2021, Mr. Zakaria Ahmed, silver and antique dealer from Yemen and close supporter of The Zay Initiative’s work, managed to source three interesting and complete outfits through his personal connections throughout the region. Though not the highest of quality, Dr. Reem Tariq El Mutwalli was very quick to acquire and add them to augment the Saudi section of The Zay Collection.
This flask worn by the Bani Malik tribe, Saudi Arabia, is probably used to hold water or other liquids.
A rectangle-shaped cotton fabric is folded and sewn into a basic bag then decorated with two horizontal straps of colourful woven bands in geometric patterns with a 15 cm wide fringe. The colours include black, white, red, yellow, green, and dark and light blue.
A narrower 3 cm wide part of the same woven band is used to create a long strap for the bag to be carried diagonally across body.
A glass bottle is tucked inside the bag allowing just the tip to be visible, sealed with a cap. The bag is stuffed with cotton to help insulate the liquid.