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Abdulla, the cotton-carder

  • 2019-12-03
Abdulla, the cotton-carder
Abdulla Sleman, 77, has been practicing the cotton carding craft for nearly 60 years Photo: Karwan Salehi
Karwan Salehi- Kirkuk

Abdulla Sleman was only 20 when he left Qara Salim village in the Sheikh Bzeni area towards Kirkuk.
Soon after he settled in Rahimawa neighborhood, he embarked on the cotton carding business.
For nearly 60 years, Abdulla Sleman has been makng cotton pillows and mattresses, which he says are very healthy, and doctors often recommend them for patients with certain health conditions.
Abdulla pays 2,500 IQD (approximately US$ 2) for each kilo of cotton he buys. Making a single size mattress costs 30,000 IQD, while a cotton pillow costs 8,000 IQD.
After nearly six decades in the carding craft, Turkish and Iranian products seem to have been affecting Abdulla's business; yet he is determined to swim against the tide and protect this ancient craft from extinction.
"We should hold on, because there are still some people who cannot have a good sleep unless they lay their heads on the pillows we make."

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