In years past, the Mennonites and Amish would use a mat such as this to set their oil lamp upon. This mat came from a Mennonite estate in Lancaster County rich in the tradition of hand weaving and stitchery. In this case, a Mennonite lady took the time to braid together strips of cloth (often from wornout clothing or rags, sometimes even using ribbons from funeral sprays!) to make into something useful and decorative for her home. This particular mat is about 25" long and 12" wide...a most sought after size for an oval shaped mat. It is all handbraided and stitched and the colors are very complimentary. There are some broken stitches here and there that need to be repaired but I will allow the buyer to do that if so desired...I am not good with a needle and do not wish to do more damage with my inadequate skills! Overall, this is a lovely mat with minimal problems...do not pass it by! Please be sure to check out my other mats I bought from the same estate.