Story: Māori clothing and adornment – kākahu Māori

Lacebark piupiu

Lacebark piupiu

The word 'piupiu' means 'to swing', and is also the name for a skirt with free-hanging strands. Piupiu could be worn either around the waist or across one shoulder. They were made in many types of material and styles. This example, from around 1900, is made from the soft inner bark of the houhere (lacebark), with a harakeke (flax) band and cords. The weaver has also used white kererū (native pigeon) and brown kiwi feathers.

Using this item

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa
Reference: ME001677

Permission of the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

All images & media in this story

How to cite this page:

Awhina Tamarapa and Patricia Wallace, 'Māori clothing and adornment – kākahu Māori - Adapting to new lands and climate', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/object/40985/lacebark-piupiu (accessed 19 February 2020)

Story by Awhina Tamarapa and Patricia Wallace, published 5 Sep 2013