Culture is about what you make as much as it is about what you do.
An ancient form of handicrafts passed down through the generations, weaving straw has been a time-honored skill in the town of Shanghai’s north-west Xuhang since the early Qing Dynasty (mid-17th century) and has traditionally employed most of the townspeople.
These hand-woven straw items aren’t just limited to baskets. The townspeople of Xuhang are so skilled with straw-weaving that they can make a number of items including shoes.
In the early part of the 20th century, the world took notice, buying up everything the town could produce and shipping them to the US and Europe.
Now that the demand for these straw-woven products has fallen off, it’s an art form that needs to be preserved to future generations.
Editor: Gu Jia
Copywriter: Colin Hanna