Kyideshor— Hometown of Tibet Apron
Edit by:Penny Yu
A women is weaving pulu, a silky material obtained from the fibers of the Cibotium glaucum in Kyideshor.[Photo/Tibet Commercial Daily]
Bangdan, a kind of Tibetan women’s apron, is one of the favorite items of clothing among Tibetan women. Kyideshor Township, known as the land of Bangdan, located in Gonggar county of Lhoka prefecture, is about 80 kilometers away from Lhasa City.
With the machines crunching, Kyideshor has enjoyed a history of over 1,000 years in making Tibetan apron. Passing down the apron producing techniques from generation to generation, the locals are also weaving their colorful lives.
Its weaving techniques were listed as China’s state-level intangible cultural heritage in 2006. In Kyideshor township, almost every family has a textile machine for weaving Bangdan.
At present, the number of small-sized Bangdan workshops is increasing year by year in Kyideshor. More than 980 household workshops have been equipped with over 2,100 textile machines, contributing a total annual income of as much as 8 million yuan.
To make a Bangdan, people start with shearing sheep at the end of May every year, and this will last until the end of July. They have to wash the wool in river before the river is frozen in winter. The wool is spun into thread first, and then dyed, brushed and woven into strips, and finally the strips are stitched into a pulu. A Bangdan is composed by 3 pieces of long pulu. There are wide-strip Bangdans and narrow-strip ones. Wide-strip Bangdans use sharply contrasted colors. They are bold and bright, and favored by women in the farming and pastoral areas. Narrow-strip Bangdans use similar tonality to create a graceful and mild quality. They are popular with women in cities.
Bangdan is not only a shinning adornment of Tibetan women but also a symbol of adulthood for Tibetan girls. Parents will prepare a bangdan for girls when they’re 15 years old.
According to the statistics, the history of Tibetan cloth could be traced back to the warring state period (475-221BC). But bangdan appeared after Princess Wencheng brought various dyes to Tibet.