by: Elmer Nocheseda
My fascination with palaspas started with a palm leaf ball my father made me when I was 4 years old. My father created the BOLA with just two coconut palm leaflets. He made it so quickly that I thought it was magic!
Like any other curious child I tried to make the ball myself. I found out through the years that there are many forms that could be made out of the coconut leaves.
Four years and four decades later, I have discovered different forms of palm leaf weaving in different parts of the Philippines.
Like the PATUPAT from Santiago City, Isabela Province: and in Dagupan, Calasiao, and Lingayen, Pangasinan:
Like PUSU rice pouches from Cebu, Dumaguete, and Cagayan de Oro which have various shapes like:
Toys could also be made from coconut leaves like the following:
Baskets, food containers, and hats could be made as well, such as:
Freshness is a great part of its beauty and esthetics. Once dried, much is lost.
However, the art of reconstruction begins. We imagine the beauty of the form when it was still fresh, as we invite the power of our senses to recreate its beauty at the time the form was freshly created.