Prominent ornamental combs were worn by men across the south-eastern Solomon Islands. These are twu of the most beautifully made Malaita patterned bound combs with elaborate, finely plaited handles - obviously made by the same hand.
Pattern combs are made by spreading black palm spines and tying them in place to form the teeth before weaving complex designs into the handles in fine yellow, black and red fibres. Each pattern has a name.
From top to bottom:
A narrow pattern comb kafa gwaroa with two protruding top elements,
A slightly wider example with a different pattern on the handle.
Lengths: 17.5 cm / 7 inches long
Reference: Body Ornaments of Malaita and the Solomon Islands by Ben Burt, British Museum, 2009.