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Sew good! Vaimaanga women keep tradition alive while making a living

Thursday 9 May 2024 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Art, Business, Features, Local, National

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Sew good! Vaimaanga women keep tradition alive while making a living
From left, Mama Vaine Poasa, Jennifer Ngau and Tumutoa Kairoa from Vaimaanga Community, selling hand painted or tie dye bedsheets and pareu at the community hall yesterday. LOSIRENE LACANIVALU / 24050802 / 24050803

Selling tie-dye bed sheets or pareu is not only a source of income, but also a way of keeping the art of hand printing or tie-dye alive for young mothers and older women.

A group of women from Vaimaanga gather at the Vaimaanga Hall from Monday to Saturday every week, selling a range of hand-printed materials such as super-king, king-size, double, and single bedsheets.

Mama Vaine Poasa, who leads the women at the community hall, says this is their way of helping the community, the women, and their families.

She explains each woman comes with their items, they share ideas, sew tivaevae together, and help one another.

Poasa says it is a source of income for them, and some of the money earned goes to the community hall for the use of power and other items.

There are around 10 women in the group, but some young and single mothers join them if they are not at work, she adds.

 “It helps them because nowadays life is hard for people, and these are some ways to help their families get some money to help them at home.”