Kirdi Beaded Cache Sexe Pikuran Cameroon
Until around 1961, women in certain Cameroon groups, including the Matakam women of northern Cameroon, traditionally wore pubic aprons, known as 'caches sexes,' made of small iron strips and held in place by a fiber belt. The Matakam, also referred to as 'Kirdi' or 'pagans,' reside in the Mandara mountains area and are recognized for their arts of personal adornments, particularly iron-made items like the pubic aprons. The iron aprons, worn by mature married women, signified elevated status in Kirdi society. Over time, beaded aprons have replaced the iron ones and are adorned by women during special occasions such as marriages or childbirth presentations. These beaded aprons feature geometric patterns, reflecting designs shared with neighboring peoples. The tradition of cache sexes has evolved into beaded forms, showcasing how customs are maintained through different materials for both cultural and aesthetic expressions. Additionally, both the nomadic Fulani and the Kirdi craft these beaded aprons, with maidens wearing them, sometimes torn as part of wedding night rituals.
Approximate Age: 20th Century