The nomadic and livestock culture of the Kyrgyz people could not but give rise to material culture associated with animals. From sheep’s wool and animal skin, Kyrgyz people have done many beautiful and interesting things for centuries.
The main product of Kyrgyz craftsmanship, of course, is felt. Felt is coarse matter that is made from pressed sheep wool, and it is felt that has become one of the most significant materials in Kyrgyz culture. The field of application of felt is truly enormous. Felt is used to make yurts, clothes, including a national chapan and ak-kalpak dressing. However, the famous Kyrgyz felt carpet, the shyrdak, deserves a special place, the manufacture of which requires great skill and perseverance. A distinctive feature of the shyrdak are patterns in the form of an ethnic ornament, bizarre and rather difficult to apply.
Also widely known are Kyrgyz mats woven from a plant called chiy, which are used to produce felt, warm yurts and are used for decorative purposes, owns, toys, home decoration, and much, much more.
Tush-kiyiz – embroidered wall carpets to decorate a yurt from soft fabric, often part of the bride’s dowry. The motifs are dominated by plants and flowers, sometimes animals. Sometimes the names of the newlyweds or the year when this carcass was made are embroidered on the carpet. Today, large fabrics can be used to decorate pillowcases, bags and many others. Intricate embroidery and beautiful motifs stand out among various fabrics in Central Asia.
Ala-kiyiz is another kind of felt carpet that resembles a shirdak, but the manufacturing process here is completely different. While large canvases of felt are used for shirdak, ala-kiyiz is made of small flaps of felt superimposed on each other. After that, the entire carpet is impregnated with warm water and rolled up to connect the layers. The result is a canvas without clear boundaries that seem to flow one into another, creating a picture. Although ala-kiyiz are not as durable as shirdaks, their patterns are more colorful and complex.