Updated: Dec 2, 2019
There are approximately 2000 craft villages in Vietnam, some of which are traditional, while others are modern. About 30% of the country’s households take part in some for of craft activity. Craft villages are important to the nation, because they help counter rural poverty, and reduce the rural-urban income gap. To the people, crafting villages offer the opportunity to be independent by providing jobs and income during off-crop seasons, while improving their quality of life and helping to preserve their culture.
Nowadays, Vietnam weaving villages are slowly becoming major tourist attractions, primarily because of their expert weavers and artisans, who don’t shy away from selling their handcrafted creations in tourist-oriented souvenir shops and markets. Hand-woven cotton, silk and brocade with unique motifs, designs and colors are used to make clothing, bags, purses, handkerchiefs and other items, but their textiles can also be sold in bulk. They are the perfect souvenirs, since they are unique to the people who made them, and the place they are bought from.
Vietnamese Brocade is a type of woven fabric made from raw cotton, flax or hemp. It is rich in texture, and is usually dyed in many colors, using natural dyes made from plants, seeds and other resources that the artisans collect from their surroundings.
The weaving patterns and designs are distinctly unique, and are primarily derived from the traditional weaving techniques of three ethnic minorities: the Mong people, the Ta Oi people, and the Cham people. Their weaving traditions and techniques are passed down from one generation to the next, through the women in the family.