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Emma Philpott, Resource and Content Developer, National Services Te Paerangi

Piupiu come in many styles and materials but the most common style is made of cylindrical strands of harakeke (New Zealand flax) and muka (processed New Zealand flax fibre).

Piupiu can be very fragile, and need to be stored carefully. The pōkinikini (individual lengths) have sections of dyed black fibre that make up the pattern of the piupiu. These pōkinikini are particularly fragile and can break easily.

Watch: How to care for your piupiu on the Te Papa website

Examples of piupiu from collections in Aotearoa