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Silk Weavers of Hill Tribe Laos

$34.95 + $3/shipping
Available Oct 1, 2017

Silk Weavers of Hill Tribe Laos: Textiles, Traditions and Well-Being

By Joshua Hirschstein & Maren Beck, Owners of Above the Fray. Photography by Joe Coca.

What began as a backpacking adventure with our young sons in Southeast Asia transformed into a thriving fair trade business and a renewed sense of well-being. Part travelogue, part silk-weaving primer, we present a personal portrait of our family's travels in Laos' remote Houaphan Province. Over the past decade, we have developed deep connections with the villagers of Xam Tai who raise their own fiber from silkworms, create their own natural dyes, and weave the patterns of their ancestors into healing cloths, ceremonial textiles, and daily wear. Silk Weavers of Hill Tribe Laos provides an in-depth and rare view into the everyday lives, culture, and craft of Laos' independent silk weavers. Joe Coca's gorgeous photos enrich the text.

Published by Thrums Books; 224 pages, 235 color photos.

"I have only one problem with this fascinating book—it had to end! I felt so well acquainted with the weavers and the authors and the techniques that it seemed like the story should go on forever. Loving, honest, illuminating documentation, augmented by Joe Coca's superb photography.
- Janet De Boer, editor of Textile Fibre Forum Magazine

Family in a Laos
An Akka woman in NW Laos teaches Maren how to use her drop spindle to splice and twist plant fibers.
Welcome To Above The Fray
We represent the finest traditional artists who live in hilltribe Laos and Vietnam.

Our hand-woven silks, cotton and hemp textiles, basketry, jewelry and other arts are as meaningful in these artists' lives today as they have been for generations. Who the artists are, what they value, and generations of tradition are woven into each creation.

While these artists come from a diversity of ethnicities - Tai Daeng, H'mong, Katu, Lao Loum, Dzao, Akha and others – they all share a passion, talent, and reputation for creating the highest-quality textiles and other arts using traditional materials, methods and motifs. We are particularly pleased to represent the sophisticated and intricate traditional silks of Houaphon Province in NE Laos.

In an era of rapid modernization and expanding opportunities, we recognize that these long-inherited art-forms, and the indigenous cultures they support, will better sustain their vitality and vibrancy if new interest and markets are generated.

All items at Above the Fray have been personally selected directly from the artist or in village markets in hilltribe Laos and Vietnam. A photo of the artist with each one-of-a-kind piece is often available with the purchase of that piece.

Our Website Sales Gallery represents a sample of our diverse collection; we encourage you to contact us if you are looking for a certain item, motif, style or color.

And please - come and introduce yourself at one of our events!

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