Tradditional Costume of Black H'mong People in Sapa
Sapa, the destination is not only famous for grandiose mountains and fog but also for the diversity of unique colorful cultures, in which the Black H’mong people play a very important role.
In all of Vietnam Motorcycle tours
to Sapa, you will be easy to know why this ethnic minority is called “Black H’mong”. It is very simple, because “black” is the dominant color in their costume. The special feature is that H’mong women do not wear pleated skirts like the other H’ Mong groups but wear knee trousers and long blouses, wrap long scarves around their legs, wear a blue turban around their head. With the development of silver carving, Black H’mong people also match their costume with silver jewelry such as necklace, earrings, bracelets…Because of the color black in costume and silver jewelry, the Black H’mong people look very strong and also make a deep impression to visitors when coming to Sapa.
Although life of the H’mong people has much change with more modern amenities, H’mong women still preserve their unique culture through their unique costume. H'mong women can be seen dividing or knotting a roll of linen fiber even when walking to the market or sitting around with friends. From birth to death, H’mong women always work at the loom as every day activity.
Around the H’mong house, you can see it never lacks of flax and indigo plants. They grow flax for clothes and indigo for their cloth color. There are a lot of step to make the costume of the Black H’mong. First, they grow flax and harvest them after 3 months. Second, dry these plants under the sun and then, boil the stem and tear it into thin strips.
Flax after being woven into the fabric will be taken and dyed with indigo leaves. People mix indigo leaves with ashes and water in 3 days, after that mix with lime water to make viscous sludge. White cloth will be dipped into the mixture, if just one time, the white cloth will turn into the light indigo color. After taking the cloth out of the mixture, the local people will make it dry under the sun. If they want the cloth become darker, they will continue dip the cloth into the mixture, then dry, do it again and again even until it turns black.
The Black H’mong people are very intelligent when they create light patterns on indigo background by using wax. Patterned motifs are mostly rectangular, square. After using wax to draw, the cloth will be dyed with indigo color. On the cloth, where it has wax will not be dyed into indigo like the other places. After that, wax is melted and the patterns created by wax will have white blue color. This secret seems very simple but intelligent and creative.
When joining our Vietnam motorcycle Tours
to Sapa, you can enjoy one night home-stay to learn more about the process of making clothing of Black H’mong people.