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Vietnam arts and crafts

Vietnam Arts and Crafts: What to Know Before You Go

By David Tran on Sep 28, 2022

Creative expression is a staple of most cultures, including those in Vietnam. This country has a rich history of crafting and painting. Whether you’re looking to do some shopping for unique gifts or plan to visit some local markets, you’ll find plenty of opportunities to support local artisans. This article outlines the ins and outs of visiting Vietnam with a focus on getting into the Vietnam arts and crafts scene.

What's special about Vietnam arts and crafts?

Vietnam’s artistic culture is as diverse as this country’s landscape. Despite this country’s long history as a trading center, Vietnam arts and crafts are not exposed to foreign influences, keeping them firmly rooted in this country’s rich heritage. This is particularly evident in this country’s religious architecture, which uses intricate carvings and embroidery.

While Vietnamese artisans are well known for their diverse and imaginative works, Vietnam also has a strong tradition of craftsmanship. Many crafts in Vietnam are produced for personal use or gift-giving, as opposed to being sold. You may be surprised to learn that you can buy a lot of Vietnamese art items at local markets for a fraction of the price you would pay in a big city like Ho Chi Minh City.

Top Traditional Art Forms You Must Explore in Vietnam

Pottery Making

Pottery is one of the oldest art forms in the world. It is believed that pottery making was the first art form developed by human beings. The earliest pottery was made from various materials like clay, mud, and dried cow dung. However, this practice was later replaced by an art form that used clay or other naturally-absorbent materials.

Pottery Making

Pottery is still practiced today in Vietnam and is one of the most popular traditional art forms there. If you have the chance to visit Vietnam, then you should visit a pottery studio and experience how this art form is done. Pottery is a very interesting art form that is worth exploring.

Hand Embroidery

An embroidery is a form of artwork that uses threads or yarn to make designs or motifs in fabric. Unlike what one might think, embroidery is a highly skilled form of art that involves a lot of practice and a keen eye.

Hand Embroidery

The motifs or designs can be made in a variety of ways such as by stitching the threads onto fabric or drawing the designs on a piece of fabric. The best texture for hand embroidery is cotton. Hand embroidery is a popular art form that is practiced throughout the world. In Vietnam, it is still one of the major traditional art forms.

Silk Paintings

Silk paintings are a highly traditional form of artwork that involves painting on silk fabrics using a variety of natural pigments. The materials used in this traditional art form include quicksilver, charcoal, oil, colored sands, and more. The colors used in silk paintings are natural and are obtained from minerals, plants, and animals.

Vietname Silk Paintings

Unlike other traditional art forms, the colors used in these paintings can be mixed and matched to create a wide variety of hues and shades. These paintings have been practiced in Vietnam for many centuries and are a popular art form today.

Lacquer Paintings

Lacquer paintings are a form of artwork that involves painting on hardboard or paper with lacquer paints. The paints used in these paintings have a long shelf life, which means that they can be kept for many years.

Vietnam Lacquer Paintings

Traditionally, Vietnamese artisans have used red lacquer paints to create paintings that are abstract or figurative in nature. However, today, artisans are experimenting with repainting these paintings using modern techniques. The colors used in these paintings are vibrant, which makes these traditional art forms stand out in any room.

Sedge handicraft

Sedge handicraft is a traditional art form that involves using sedges to make various artistic items such as baskets, mats, rattan, and more. This art form is one of the oldest in the world and has been practiced in many parts of the world since ancient times.

Vietnam Sedge handicraft

Vietnamese sedge art is one of the most popular traditional art forms in this country. Sedge basket making is a labor-intensive art form that involves collecting and cutting sedges, drying the plants, and weaving them together to create unique baskets.


Carpentry is yet another traditional art form that is popular in Vietnam. It involves creating artistic items such as furniture, buildings, and ornaments. Vietnamese carpentry involves three different art forms: wood carving, wood engraving, and woodblock printing. The items created in this art form have a long shelf life and can be used as wedding gifts, decorations, ornaments, and more.

Vietnam Carpentry

Wood carving is an art form that involves carving decorative ornaments from wood. The designs made in this art form are based on cultural influences and are usually inspired by folk tales and mythology. Another traditional Vietnamese art form is wood engraving. In this art form, engraved designs are made on wood using stamps, knives, and other sculpting instruments.

Bamboo and rattan craft

Bamboo and rattan crafts are popular traditional art forms that are practiced in Vietnam. Bamboo crafts are mostly done with natural materials such as bamboo, rattan, and tree bark.

Vietnam Bamboo and rattan craft

Rattan crafts are made from the fibers of the rattan plant which is found all over Southeast Asia. Vietnamese crafts made from bamboo and rattan have a long shelf life, which makes them ideal for gifting to friends and family members.

Best Traditional Craft Villages in Vietnam

Bat Trang Pottery Village

This village is located near Ha Noi city. The reason why we have included this village in our list of the best traditional craft villages in Vietnam is because of the quality of the products that you will find here. The village is famous for producing traditional pottery. There are more than 40 different types of pottery that are produced here.

Bat Trang Pottery Village

Additionally, the village is also known for producing ceramic tiles, construction bricks, and hand-made toys. You will also find a range of other locally produced goods such as baskets and wooden items amongst other things. The products produced here are quite striking and are made up of a range of beautiful colors. If you are looking to visit a pottery village, this is one of the best ones in Vietnam to visit.

Dong Ho Painting Village

This is another great village that you can visit in Vietnam. The village is located in Bac Ninh, 35km from Hanoi. You will find that this is a well-established village with a long history.

Dong Ho Painting Village

The people here have been practicing their traditional art form for hundreds of years. They make colorful paintings to decorate the local roofs and walls of the buildings. The paintings are popular for their folk art style which is quite striking due to the vibrant and intricate designs.

Dong Ho Painting Village 1

Another thing that you will find in this village is that the local artisans use a variety of materials when creating their paintings and other items such as pottery, wood, and paper. They also make decorative items such as wood carvings and basket ware.

Van Phuc Silk Village

This is a silk weaving village that has been in operation for more than 300 years. The people here use natural silk to create beautiful silk products such as hand-woven silk scarves, silk clothing, and tablecloths. You can also find hand-woven baskets, woven mats, and other items made from silk.

Van Phuc Silk Village

The products produced here are quite striking and are made up of a range of beautiful colors. If you are in Ha Noi and looking to visit a silk weaving village with a unique art form and some beautiful things to take home, this is a good place to visit.

Chuong Straw Hat Village

If you love to visit traditional craft villages, then you should visit this straw hat-making village, 30km south of Hanoi. The people here have been making straw hats for hundreds of years.

Chuong Straw Hat Village

The hats are quite different from other types of hats because they are made to be worn whilst walking, usually as an open-fronted hat. You will find that the hats are quite practical and can be used for a variety of activities such as farming and fishing.

Kim Son Sedge Mats Village

If you are visiting a traditional craft village in the central coastal province of Ninh Binh, you should visit the mats and siding village. The people here have been designing and producing siding and terrace mats for hundreds of years. Some of the designs used to make these items are quite intricate and require a lot of skill to be made.

Kim Son Sedge Mats Village

You can expect to find many different designs across the village and you can use these designs to beautify your home or garden. The village is also known for producing a type of plank known as the Vietnamese bamboo. You can use these planks to create a variety of items such as tables, chairs, and wall decorations.

Quat Dong Embroidery Village

This embroidery village is located in Thuong Tin district, about 25km from Hanoi's city center. This is a well-established embroidery village and is famous for producing beautiful embroidery items. The designs used to create these items include traditional designs that have been used for centuries and designs used by the Hoa Hao Buddhist sect.

Quat Dong Embroidery Village

You can expect to find many different types of embroidery such as sashes, tablecloths, wall hangings, and more. The quality of the embroidery is quite good and the designs are quite intricate.

Kim Bong Carpentry Village

This is another great traditional craft village that you should visit in Vietnam. Bong Carpentry Village is located in Hoi An and has a long history. The people here have been practicing their traditional carpentry for more than 400 years.

Kim Bong Carpentry Village

The items that are made here include wood carvings, furniture, wood plaques, and some other items made from wood. The carpentry items are quite beautiful and quite artistic. Some of the items that are made here include furniture such as tables and chairs, cabinetwork, and lanterns. The carpentry items are quite durable and can be used for many years.

My Nghiep Traditional Weaving Village

For those of you who are interested in visiting a weaving village in Vietnam, then we would recommend that you visit My Nghiep Traditional Weaving Village in Ninh Thuan province. This is a weaving village that has been in operation for more than 150 years. The people here have been weaving traditional fabrics such as silk and cotton. You can expect to find a variety of weaving patterns that are quite intricate and beautiful. The items are quite durable and can be used for several years. This is the best place for those who love beautiful and intricate items

Where to buy Vietnam traditional arts and crafts

Vietnamese artisans produce items that are both beautiful and affordable. You can buy products directly from artisans at craft villages, markets, festivals, and other events.

You can also buy handmade items from local markets, which are common throughout this country and feature plenty of Vietnamese products. These markets often sell items at a fraction of the price you might pay in a big city, and are a great way to support local artisans.

Tips for buying arts and crafts in Vietnam

Vietnam is a great place to visit, and the best way to ensure that you have a safe and enjoyable trip is to use caution. This means that you should keep your wits about you at all times, especially in crowded areas. While there are some great opportunities to buy Vietnamese handicrafts, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

- Always ask locals for advice when visiting handicraft markets and art studios, as they will be best placed to tell you what to look out for.

- Avoid buying handicraft products directly from vendors, as they are often just trying to make a fast buck. Instead, buy items from market stalls, where you will be less likely to be ripped off.

- Be careful when dealing at handicraft markets and art studios. In some places, artisans are not allowed to sell products directly to visitors. This is a common scam and you should be wary of any artisan trying to sell you anything.


Traditional art forms are popular in many parts of the world and Vietnam is no exception. These traditional art forms have a long history, are difficult to learn and practice, and can be expensive to maintain. However, if you visit this country, you will be able to experience many of these art forms while they are still practiced there.

From wood carving to silk weaving, Vietnamese artisans produce some of the most imaginative and vibrant works in the world. In addition to these art forms, you can also visit markets and festivals to find a wide range of Vietnam arts and crafts. They are worth visiting and exploring because they can offer insight into this country’s rich cultural heritage.

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