Awajún-Wampis Weavings

Weaving is an important activity for Awajún men and objects are made from cotton and vegetable fibres, such as tamshi and chambira, which serve as the basis for the manufacture of baskets,, bags and clothes.


Basket making is a work done by men for their wives and daughters, who use materials from the forest, such as tamshi. There are a variety of baskets, among them the tukúp (or pitak in the Wampis langauge), made from tamshi fibres, with a lid, of closed weave, lined with banana, pitai or pumpu leaves for waterproofing. It is carried hanging with a bark or woven strap and is used for storing or transporting delicate objects.

The tukup is a waterproof basket that protects the objects it carries from the rain, it is used as a suitcase for long journeys. The word tukúp is also associated with the wasp, as it builds its honeycomb in the same design as the basket.

The suku is a basket of closed weave, which men make for women. The suku basket is used to collect fruits or fish, and crops from the farm, such as banana, cocona, among others. The shikitai is another basket used for catching small fish.


The traditional Awajún bag is known as a kumbai or wampach, and is made with chambira fibre, and has a process of dyeing with natural pigments from a plant known as "yamacay".

The bag or wampach comes in large and small sizes. The small one is known as ichimpach, and it was used to carry tobacco when they go to the forest in search of a "vision".