The term "fine mat" is not an accurate English translation for the word Ie-Toga, a most valued possession of the royal families of Samoa. The Ie-Toga is never used as a mat; it never was and it will never be, it is much too valuable. The wealth of the chief is measured according to the number of Ie-Togas he has and the history attached to each robe in his collection.
Made and controlled by women, Ie-toga are given as gifts at events marking major life events (births, weddings, funerals, title taking). While lesser mats are also exchanged during these events, fine mats hold the most prestige. If fine mats are included in the gift exchange, it bestows great honour on the recipient, and increases the standing of the gift-giver. Ie-toga are quickly noticed and appreciated by event spectators. Women gesture gracefully during the presentation, signalling the mat's importance and bringing attention to its beauty.