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07/06/2017 - 10:22

Revival from the Festivals

After six Hue Traditional Craft Festivals, the villages in the region have revived and developed, creating many new products, and new experiential tours combined with shopping for tourists.

The owner of Phuoc Tich pottery workshop, Luong Thanh Hien (far right), performs pottery for visitors. Photo: Thanh Huong

Effects

At the 2007 Hue Traditional Craft Festival, products of Phuoc Tich pottery, from Phong Hoa village (Phong Dien) once again appear. Tourists can experience the over-500-year-old handmade pottery techniques of Phuoc Tich.

With a combination between tradition and modernity,and a collaboration between older and younger artisans, for the first time, more than 50 ceramic samples are produced to serve tourists at the Hue Traditional Craft Festival. Since then, pottery has been revived, with more batches delivered, reaffirming the Phuoc Tich pottery brand name among other famous pottery villages such as Bat Trang, Chu Dau, Phu Lang ...

The owner of Phuoc Tich pottery, Luong Thanh Hien told us: "If it didn’t participate in the Hue Traditional Craft Festival, our pottery would probably no longer exist, and Phuoc Tich pottery products would not have a place in the market today. Through the Craft Festivals, our facility has signed many contracts to provide products, which motivates us to preserve and develop the profession. "

The return of Phuoc Tich pottery is just the beginning and not yet stable. Even though the products are present in many places, sales are not high and visitors are still hesitant about buying. In order to make impressions and affirm the brand, the pottery village needs to have its own way, create new models with Hue characteristics, and focus on promotion. Accordingly, Phuoc Tich potteries can truly be revived and attract more clients.

Thanh Tiên paper-flower-making villagers have still retained their 300-year-old profession when they diligently created paper flowers for decorative and worshipping needs. As living standards increased, this product was no longer suitable, so the sales channels were limited, and the village got stuck. In early 2007, painter Than Van Huy restored and developed the lotus flower paper, in addition to the traditional paper flowers, and was welcomed by visitors through "The Colors of Thanh Tien" show at the 2007 Hue Traditional Craft Festival. Since then, paper flower sales have strongly grown in many provinces, cities and even exported to many countries in the world.

The artist Than Van Huy confirmed: "The greatest benefit for the craft village from the festivals is its extensive reach to each visitor, business and even the community. Through 10 years of attending the Craft Festivals, paper lotuses have now appeared in many places, from coffee shops, hotels to Vietnamese families, as well as to many foreign visitors. The life of the villagers has improved since paper flowers sale increased. "

According to the artist, the biggest concern as well as the goal of the villagers are to invest in technology to improve the template, to design more small-sized, compact paper flowers for tourists to easily transport. This is a problem we have to solve in order to realize the desire of making Thanh Tien paper flowers into a "made in Hue" souvenir for tourists.

Improving tourism

Not only successful in promoting their product brand, many craft villages that seem to have disappeared with time, have now risen like Phuoc Tich pottery, My Xuyen carpets (Phong Dien); Bamboo rattan (Quang Dien) or conical hat (Phu Vang); bronze casting, jewelry (Hue City) ... Since then, many tours have been created, motivating villagers to get involved. Many experiential tours now entail demonstrations and shopping of village products such as Thanh Tien paper flower, Bao La bamboo weaving, Loc Thuy cajeput oil, Thuy Loc embroidery, Phuoc Tich pottery....

After the revival of Phuoc Tich pottery, the People's Committee of Phong Dien district has opened the tour "Hương xưa làng cổ" (Ancient scent, ancient village), with a focus on visiting the ancient house complexes, the Cham cultural heritage and traditional craft villages such as Phuoc Tich pottery, My Xuyen sculpture, Pho Trach cushion ...

"Tịnh Tâm kim cổ" and "Bảo tàng Đồ sứ ký" from the Nguyen dynasty are two of the many cultural - tourism products that came into existence after the Hue Traditional Craft Festivals. "At the 2007 Craft Festival, seeing visitors enjoy watching live demonstrations of jewelry and experiencing the stages of product creation in a passionate and enthusiastic way, I was concerned to enhance such an experience, creating a space for demonstrating and displaying of jewelry to the visitors. Thus, the idea of building "Tịnh Tâm kim cổ" came to mind and since then, the Hue jewelry industry becomes more popular to tourists," elite artist Tran Duy Mong, owner of the jewelry exhibition site "Tịnh Tâm kim cổ" shares.

According to the Director of the Department of Industry and Trade Nguyen Thanh, the Hue Traditional Craft Festivals have not only contributed to promoting and selling handicrafts but have also created a breakthrough in the field of preserving and developing traditional craft villages. Through the festivals, many craft villages have been revitalized and thriving, and they have invested in modern machinery to create new products for the market, creating more jobs and improving the economic efficiency for rural industrial facilities.

By Thanh Hương

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