Sunday, December 12, 2010

Vietnamese Handicrafts

As mentioned earlier, I recently returned from a trip to Vietnam and Hong Kong. We did a 2-day hike through the Northern Vietnam highlands in Sapa , through villages of Hmong ethnic minorities, who make some very lovely crafts - especially intricate embroidery.

Hmong women in traditional clothing

Detail of Hmong embroidery

They make their own fabric (from the harvesting the hemp, weaving the fabric, and dying it with indigo) - and make clothes, bags, and scarves. We went to the Ethnology Museum in Hanoi, which had extensive exhibits of the many ethnic minorities, their culture, and their crafts. I highly recommend this museum - if it's the only one you go to in Hanoi, this is it. We spent over 4 hours here, and they have an excellent gift shop with a great selection of crafts and good prices (without haggling!). Woot.

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