The wooden rakes, presented below, are used for collecting pine-needles and grass. In Nepal, these rakes are called karaso. Their use is vividly documented in Monica Connell’s book Against a Peacock Sky (Chapter The Karaso, pp. 110-122). In that book, a Nepalese woman describes the making of an karaso in the following way:

“Well, first of all you have to find the right branch — a  pine-branch that splays at the end into three, four or five separate limbs. Then you strip it of its bark and, while the wood is still green and supple, you bend back the thin limbs and bind them in place with string.  When you’ve done that you have to leave it on a drying rack above the fire … oh, I suppose about three months. Afterwards, when you take off the string, the soft fingers at the end of the arm have hardened into claws”. (Connell asks:) ‘ And how does it get to be so smooth and shiny?’ “That comes with years and years of raking: grass and pine-needles, grass and pine-needles” (p. 122).

Literature: Connell, M. Against a peacock sky. London: Viking, 1991.