Archives for posts with tag: tribal


A matching pair of ear rings that goes with the Miao neckwear on yesterday’s blog.  This pair of ear rings are also an assemblage of the accessories found on the Miao’s costume.

The ear rings look like a pair of Miao dancers.  Here is a video of the Miao dancers wearing costumes with accessories (but I am sure your eyes will be focus on the sweet little girl dancing along on the left)

Something Old Something New
Collectible Jewellery Collection

silver braceletDIA100mm, China

A Hakka silver bracelet which is called a Shiu Ag, the Hakka believes that the bracelet can keep the evil “wind” away (驅風), the bracelet is quite popular with the older generation women.  In Chinese medicine the sickness of the 4 seasons,  cold / dampness / dryness / summer heat / heat (寒,濕,燥,暑,熱) will enter our body through the “wind”, so its best to get rid of the evil wind.



Textile Width 450mm, China

Fancy a striped shirt made with hand woven cloth?

Before that some stripes illusion.

Hmong tribeHmong tribe costumeL700mm, Thailand

This smart garment belongs to the Striped Hmong tribe (Hmoob Txaij) of Thailand, they are one of the 5 hill tribes in the area between Northern Thailand, Laos and Myanmar.  Amongst the Hmong tribes, there are 4 sub tribe – White Hmong, Green Hmong, Striped Hmong and Hmong Chinese.  The Striped Hmong’s costume have striped bands on the arms.

silver bracelet

DIA70xH70mm, China

This fine silver bracelet was one from the Miao tribe in China, the size of a cuff of a shirt, reminiscent of part of the armor.  They are worn in pairs and would be up to 4 pairs at the same time.   Different branches of the Miao tribe have their individual bracelet which all the women would be wearing.

silver neckwear


DIA180mm, China

Today we have something more traditional, part of the Dong tribe consume, a triple ring silver neckwear.  Together with the silver head wear, they are the most important part of their costume, passing down from generations.  There are many style for the neck ring, we found this particular one to be very modern and bold.

L250xW70mm, China

This is a pair of embroidery shoes of the Miao tribe (for more about Miao tribe shoes, see our earlier post, Embroidery Shoes).  Today I would like to concentrate on the cloth sole of the shoes which is entirely handmade.  Before rubber and leather sole became popular in China, most of the soles are made with cloth, it is a common household practice, even mother remembers making shoes for herself in her childhood.  Here is mom’s instruction:

  1. Save up old clothes and off cuts for a year, so materials are ready for making new shoes for Chinese new year
  2. Cook up some glue with water and rice flour (the Chinese version of wall paper paste)
  3. On a flat board, applied glue to the edge of the board, then stretch the a large piece of cotton cloth, apply a layer of glue over it.  On the second layer place smaller pieces of cloth, avoid any overlapping or gaps, apply a layer.  On the top place a large piece of cotton, avoid creases, applied glue over it.  Let dry for a night
  4. Use a newspaper to trace out the sole of the old pair of shoe, enlarge to suit.  Prepare an addition one for a size larger.
  5. Cut out from the dried cloth pile 6 pieces from the larger template (large filler – LF), 7 from the smaller (small filler – SF) one and 2 smaller pieces for the heel (H).  Put the pieces of the same size together, clamp them and give it a good trim so that they are the same size and shape.  Reverse the template and cut out the soles for the other shoe.
  6. Take a piece from the large filler and mount a piece of cotton, wrapped the edges over to the top.  This will become the bottom layer of the sole (BS), the piece that touches on the ground.  Take the other 6 larger fillers and stick on a cotton piping around it.
  7. Then places the fillers in the order; BS-LF-SF-LF-H-SF-LF-SF-LF-SF-LF-H-SF-LF-SF-SF-SF.  Stitch temporarily to hold them together, clamp it well and sew the edge with hemp string (you will need an awl for this).  Then make uniform and small stitiches (as seen in the photo) throughout the whole of the sole.
  8. The completed sole is then brushed with warm water and covered with a blanket overnight.
  9. The next morning, the sole is compressed with a mallet and air dried.
  10. Now the sole is complete, all you need to do is the upper shoes and of course the embroidery …

CIR650xH650mm, China

The pleated dress is part of the female Miao tribe costume.  The legend of the pleated dress goes like this; once upon a time, there was a handsome Miao hunter, one day he caught a beautiful golden pheasant and he gave it as a gift to the girl he was in love with.  The girl, Ah Beng, looking at the golden pheasant and decided to make herself as beautiful as the bird, so she weaved a cloth added embroidery and made herself a pleated dress.  The neighbors saw how beautiful she looked and soon everyone started dressing with amazing pleated dresses.


This is a jacket designed and tailored by our shop in the style of the Miao tribe.  The decorative pieces are embroidery from the Miao tribe in Gui Zhou.  The red eye creature in the embroidery (can you spot it?) is a three legged toad.  The toad represented wealth and good harvest.  This representation is shared by an old Chinese folk story; once upon a time there was an evil monster, the young Lui Hai had him defeated and it turned out to be a three legged toad.  The toad turned good and followed Lui everywhere fighting other monsters.  Lui also has a habit of aiding the poor, the legend has it that the toad has the ability of  bring wealth, at where he reside there is treasure.  The toad became a symbol of fortune and blessing.

W600xL900mm, China

This is one of the traditional costume of the Miao tribe from the Qian Chung Nan area  In fact there are over 200 different styles within the Miao tribe, different district would have their own costumes (hairstyle, accessory, clothing, etc) which has been modified along the different dynasty.  From the Qing dynasty, embroidery, silverware, Manchurian style left or right breasted garments were added into the collection.  This garment would have been worn by a middle age female; made with blue cotton, tailored to be loosely fitted with no collar.