The sight of creamish or pale brown baskets made of cane and bamboo locally named by the Angami tribe as ‘Mekho’ never fails to catch the attention of the onlookers. Womenfolk carry them either to fetch water or collect harvest such as rice and vegetables from the paddy fields and gardens in Nagaland.
As these baskets have a conical shape with a wide mouth, the easiest way to carry them in the uneven terrain of Nagaland, is to wear a strap around one’s head that is attached to the basket. While carrying the basket in this manner the body is often inclined following the gradient of the hill.
The ‘Mekho’ can be found in various shapes and sizes and is even made out of other materials depending upon the purpose for which it is made. Interestingly, the designs of this utility cane basket vary from tribe to tribe across the state.
Despite slight differences in the design, these conical baskets are often based on the common geometric principle: "the subtle transition from a small square base to a wide circular mouth, the transition being achieved through different curves on the sides".