The Adventures of a Bag Designer: Weave Sourcing
Mrs. Inra Hani
The My Nghiep Brocade Weaving Village up north has been on my radar for a few weeks now. A group of Cham people live there and weave everyday through traditional looms. A lot of those weaves are either kept locally for clothing, sent overseas or down south to Saigon for wholesale.
Through planning my trip to the weaving village, I came across Mrs. Inra Hani; a talented Cham artist, dancer and businesswoman located in Saigon who has made it her mission to educate others about her culture. She acts as a liaison between the village and designers, like me, who want to purchase Cham weaves.
So a few days a go Khuê (my amazing Admin Assistant / Translator) and I made our way 10 kms via motorbike through Saigon to see Mrs. Inra Hani and her weave shop. Our drive started like any other day in August, through a bit of rain:
As we got closer to Inrahani’s the rain started coming down harder and we ended up driving through flash flooding! Water was at least a foot high off of the road.
If you’ve ever ridden on a motorbike in the rain you know how hard it is to stay dry, let alone driving through massive puddles. By the time we arrived, we looked like we had stood outside for hours. So we shook off as much water as possible and stepped inside the weave shop.
We were ecstatic to see huge piles of weaves; each one in different colors and many designs. Mrs. Inra Hani told us that most of the Cham designs are to represent what the weaver sees around them, like watermelon, bananas and dog footprints. We told her about our plans to go up north to her village, which resulted in a huge smile on her face! Her sons were going to be there the beginning of September and would be able to show us around the village and introduce us to the weavers.
We left Mrs. Inra Hani’s with our trip set and two new weaves:
x Danica, Wild Tussah Founder