Situated on the bank of Nhue River, about 10km southwest of Hanoi Old Quarter, Van Phuc silk village is renowned for its traditional weaving and premium quality silk products. At the age of more than 1,200 years, Van Phuc is proud to be the most ancient silk village which provides the best silk in Vietnam.
Visitors to Van Phuc village will be impressed by typical manner of an ancient village in the north of Vietnam with banyan tree, well, communal house, and the sound of power-looms everywhere. Walking on the main road in Van Phuc, tourists will be lost in the world of silk with various products like shirts, ties, crafts, dresses… made of silk available in the village.
Van Phuc silk village became famous from the reign of Ly. Van Phuc silk was the first introduced at the Marseille International Fair (1931) and Paris (1938), it was evaluated as the sophisticated products of Indochina. Van Phuc silk is very popular in France, Thailand, and Indonesia… From 1958 to 1988, Van Phuc silk were exported to Eastern Europe countries, from 1990, it was exported to many countries in the world.
In the last century, Silk was considered as extremely precious handwork which was only used to tailor Royal members’ and aristocrats’ dress. The special beauty of Van Phuc or Ha Dong silk was inspiration for many Vietnamese poems, songs and movies (see The White Silk Dress, one of the 5 most outstanding Vietnamese movies).
For many years, Van Phuc village still retains intact the traditional values. In general, the special features of Van Phuc silk and in particularly Hang Van silk is warm in the winter and cool in the summer, wearing it people find soft and gentle. Decorative patterns on silk are diverse such as Song Hac sample, Tho Dinh sample, Tu Quy sample… and it always follows the traditional methods.
Nearly 90 percentage of 1280 household are involved in making silk products. The village produce more than 2 million meter of silk per year . Coming and Visiting Vạn Phúc village is like a chance for tourists to discover the Vietnam making silk industry. Why The Van Phuc village is so famous.
Van Phuc silk has been known for its smooth, light weight, and elegant appearance. Especially, a traditional kind of silk called Van Silk made in Van Phuc make the wearers feel cool in summer and warm in winter. Today, to satisfy various demand for silk of the market, Van Phuc silk producers have expanded their silk and garment goods like embroidered silk, , wrinkled silk, double layers and more colors for silk products.
Many families in Van Phuc open their own shops on the main road of the village; create a “town of silk” that sell eye-catching and high quality silk products. Tourists may buy available nice souvenir and clothes in the shop, or select the most suitable materials to then get customized products. The sellers are very friendly and can speak a little English and French to communicate to foreign tourists.
Nowadays, although the weaving has been mechanized for higher productivity, there are still simple manual looms in some houses in the village which help tourists contemplate the genuinely traditional Vietnamese way of making silk.
Or if you can not go to the village Van Phuc, when walking the streets of Hanoi, particularly Hang Ngang, Hang Dao and Hang Gai, there is a resurgence of silk. Many different products, including as clothes, embroidered pictures, handbags and lanterns are on offer there.