Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Samoan Lauhala Rolls

We just received an order of the Samoan lauhala. The Samoan lauhala rolls are a little smaller in diameter than our Tahitian lauhala and as such, have a great new lower price as well ($50).

The lauhala roll, or laufala, as it is known in Samoa, is made of approximately 60 leaves. The leaves are soft and pliable suitable for weaving, costumes and crafting projects.

Traditionally the women collected the dried leaves from the pandanus tree. They then stripped the thorns off, cleaned the leaves, and formed large rolls which made for easy storage. Starting a project, the women would pull lauhala leaves from the roll, shred them to the desired widths and weave them into various patterns and projects.

Each leaf is approximately 39 inches (1 meter) and averages about 2 1/2 inches in width. Imported. Product of Samoa.

The differences between the Samoan and the Tahitian rolls are minor. Both come from the local Pandanus trees found throughout the South Pacific islands. Both are stripped of thorns and softened in water (mostly in the ocean) to also clean the leaves. Later they are dried, flattened and gathered into rolls.

But we have noticed that they do have a slight difference in color. We've found that the Tahitian lauhala has a more golden tone. Whereas the Samoan lauhala has a greener tint to it. Other than that, we haven't noticed any significant differences.

Depending on how and where you store your rolls, humidity and light might also become a factor. Many of the projects that we have done or have seen have used the leaves quickly. The leaves have been soft and pliable and generally great to work with. Leaving the leaves for a long period of time will result in a difference in color (more brown).

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