Van Phuc Silk Village is located about 10km from the legendary Hoan Kiem Lake. Up to now, it has been still remained the original features of an ancient village of Vietnam with age old banyan trees, wells and communal house.
For a long time, people have known the name of Van Phuc for its traditional sericulture, weaving and silk products. Visiting the village, tourists are surely attracted by various beautiful shirts, crafts, ties, dresses and many other items of Vietnamese silk. Particularly, the silk of Van Phuc is different from others since it is weaved by very simple looms, which is the genuinely traditional Vietnamese way of making silk fabric.
People say that silk has been considered as an extreme luxury, on par with rhinoceros horn, ivory and precious handworks in Vietnam for several centuries. It has long been a universal byword of luxury, which is often worn by the richest and most powerful citizens. Perhaps many people might wonder where the cradle of Vietnamese silk lies. Of course, Van Phuc Silk Village is proud to be the origin of Vietnam’s best silk and silk-making industry, dated back to the long-lasting history of more than two thousand years. Witnessing many ups and downs, the village’s silk craft has revived in order to meet the increasing demand for silk of both domestic and foreign markets.
Today, the fine and lustrous cloth that originates from the cocoon of the silkworm is more affordable to “ordinary” folk. Furthermore, silk is currently enjoying a fashion renaissance, particularly since its many varieties can be made into a wide range of designs suitable for all facets of modern life. Should you intend to have a silk pair of formal clothes made, just come here and select the materials that suit you, and professional tailors will bring you satisfaction!
Like other visitors to the village, you will be surprised at this “silk shop town”, where almost all houses along the paths have been turned into shops selling silk products. The village is now home to 1,280 households, with 90% involved in silk production and business. More than 2 million meters of silk are produced here each year. Most importantly, coming here offers you a good chance to explore the Vietnamese traditional industry of silk-making.
No tourists here are left discontented when they glimpse the variety of glistening silk products. They are always confronted with an initially bewildering array of silk items, from raw materials to garments, and a myriad of silk accessories. The local silk is known for its smooth and lightweight appearance, and of qualities that enable it to be dyed more colors to suit a variety of skin tones. In order to cater to the changing demands and tastes of customers, Van Phuc silk producers are expanding their silk and garment repertoire: traditional glossy, embroidered silks, double layers, wrinkled silks, and of course, more colors, hues and weights, for which they have invented new techniques in dying and thermo-processing of the threads.
If you are going to buy something from Vietnam to bring back as a gift for those at home, all types of silk and clothes made of silk of your choice are available in the village. Though the days when Vietnam’s silk was reserved for nobility are long past, what will never change is the sense of romance and luxury imparted by silk, a luminous type of cloth. With 2000 years of history behind them, the silk weavers of Van Phuc Silk village are still busy, weaving dreams.
A short trip from Hanoi to traditional handicraft villages will be a great chance for you to explore the silk of Van Phuc as well as the pottery of Bat Trang, two famous treasures of Hanoi.