Da syrup! Kalash. Bumbaret. Pakistan. 1992.

Da Syrup


“Oh yes….the Kalash wine.

No simpler process.

Pick grapes. Either hand or foot squeeze them. Collect juice in a big barrel and in 15 to 20 days it becomes a kind of thick wine.

Very tasty and very potent!”


KUPASS (Headdress).

“One of the most striking features of Kalash dress. the ‘shushutr’ (used daily) sits on top of the head (see illustration), the ‘kupass’ sits heavily on top and is only used for dress occasions.

These two components are highly decorated. Mainly with cowrie shells, but also incorporating buttons, beads, bells and embroidery. (The base, black fabric is hand-woven to the correct shape.)

On the fancy ‘kupass’ there is a wonderful, HUGE, pom-pom on the top made from wool. Looks amazing when all the ladies gather together.



The Kalash women also decorate their faces. The older women have small dot tattoos that presumably have some significance I have yet to work out!! They also use charcoal or kohl, occasionally, to replicate these. Often I see women with a full half mask, black in colour, that is painted on using ground, burnt, goat’s horn. Also often decorated with bright orange seeds that actually are deadly nightshade seeds!!! Very dramatic look.

I am beginning to believe that some of these ‘make ups’ are medicinal  i.e. for headaches etc….the goat’s horn also serves to protect the skin from the sun (and keep the skin fair…considered beautiful here) and I see many babies faces covered in it!”


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