Photo by Galen Frysinger

TAPA \ tah-pah \

n 1 a: Natural paper-like eco-textile from the South Pacific created from beating the inner bark of a mulberry tree. b: Paper-like in texture, the fabric is colored with natural dyes and painted with tribal designs and then used as decorations, wall-hangings, and even wedding and ceremonial costumes. c: Native cultures in Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, and other Polynesian islands still hand-make tapa and use it in their everyday life, and some designers now are even using the textile to create more traditional clothing.