Xiangxi bamboo weaving technique

Apr Wed 2024
Bamboo weaving has a long history and is a typical representative traditional handicraft skill. It is mainly handed down by people in such places in Yongshun County as Furong, Xiaoxi, Langxi, Yongmao and Wanping.

According to the Chronicle of Yongshun County of the Qianlong period of the Qing Dynasty, “in February and March, women carry cages in groups...” The Chronicle of Yongshun County of the Tongzhi period also records, “people carry baskets to collect firewood on the mountain...” The cages and baskets in the chronicles are all bamboo weaving products. The main weaving products include baskets, dustpans, rice sieves, beds, chairs and mats.

Since ancient times, Yongshun’s bamboo weaving technique has been taught orally and personally from generation to generation, and gradually mastered in practice. The craftsmen have formed their own unique styles through the inheritance and development of countless generations.

Bamboo weaving tools mainly include small saws, bamboo strips cutting knives, scrapers, clamps and bamboo rulers. The process of bamboo weaving is to select bamboo first according to different bamboo ware. Cut bamboo and trim the bamboo joints flat. Cut bamboo into thin strips. Cutting bamboo strips is the basic skill of a craftsman. Scrape off the surface layer and make their sizes similar. Crush the fruit and dye bamboo strips with the fruit juice. Dry bamboo strips in the shade and then weave them. Delicate articles with a variety of patterns can be made.
In the history of the Tujia ethnic group, the bamboo weaving technique, which develops with the progress of human civilization, also reflects changes in folk customs. It is the result of people’s wisdom in a long time and difficult to be replaced by modern machines.
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