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curious to know about the ie faitaga or the lava lava
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Author Topic: curious to know about the ie faitaga or the lava lava  (Read 802 times)
Posts: 3

« on: June 28, 2011, 12:13:36 PM »

I am non Samoan , but i fell in love with the culture and have many friends who are Samoan. Not too long ago did i receive a gift from one of my friends, they sent me a lava lava and I've worn it several times. I have so much respect for the culture of Samoa. But i have a question. for the past couple of weeks I've been having strange dreams and it actually has to do with that particular gift they gave me, the lava lava. I am somewhat superstitious about it.. I feel horrible if i leave it on the ground or i don't have it neatly folded and saved in my closet. You bet my other clothes are scattered in my room but not my lava lava. ( If you are offended that i had left my lava lava on the floor please forgive me as i am not too familiar with the Samoan culture but i have great respect for it)
point is this morning i carelessly placed it my lava lava on the floor last night and just woke up at 4am with a bad nightmare which had to do with my lava lava.. so my question is what is the main history behind the lava lava? does it signify with a particular religion Samoans or any Polynesians are associated with?
because even my sister feels the same way of her lava lava she can't have on the floor, she has it neatly folded too!

I don't know maybe I'm a bit peculiar about it, but like i said i have so much respect for the Samoa and it's culture and i know that the Lava Lava is also worn by Samoans to show their pride for who they are and they're culture. so I'm hoping maybe you can answer this question , Thanks in advance (:
Tavita Tusitala
Sr. Member
Posts: 289

« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2011, 01:46:33 PM »

Well, if you have a fine mat lavalava it certainly is something precious and should not be tossed on the floor.

In old days, the most prestigious lavalava were made  with fine mats,woven of pandanus leaves, or from siapo (tapa cloth) pounded from paper mulberry or wild hibiscus bark.  Now these articles are held in high regard for ceremonial events.

The most common lavalava is a rectangular cloth wrapped around the waist.
Women these days tend to wrap them up higher like a skirt for modesty.
Cotton cloth has  replaced woven or bark cloth lavalavas as articles of daily use

The cotton lavalavas tend to be in bright colors or Hawaiian prints.and are known as ie faitaga.

Business men, politicians and high chiefs tend to wear  tailored linen lavalavas which extend mid-calf, often with pockets and buckles, created in solid colors.
Similar ankle-length skirts form the lower half of the two-piece formal dress worn by Samoan women (called puletasi)

Loudly colored lava-ava made from materials such as satin, velvet, polyester, and sequins have recently been popularized among performance dance groups and village, church, or school-based choirs.
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