T'Nalak Fabric

Lake Sebu, South Cotobato

T'Nalak Fabric

The T’nalak is an abaca-based cloth carefully hand woven by the T’boli women of Lake Sebu in South Cotabato, Mindanao. An art form passed down from many generations of T’boli master weavers - the T’nalak is made using the ikat method known for only using natural dyes and threads from plant fibers that are indigenous to the Philippines.

The making of the T’nalak not only requires a very special skill set, it is a highly spiritual process steeped in T’boli culture and tradition. According to T’boli tradition, the unique designs and patterns on the T’nalak are bestowed upon them by their ancestors through dreams. Only a handful of T’boli women have perfected this art and are thus often called, “dreamweavers.”