Ma Chau silk


(QNO) - The silk village named Ma Chau on the bank of the Thu Bon river has revived.

Dream of the golden time of silk

Ma Chau silk village is located in Duy Xuyen district, Quang Nam province. It is the cradle of silk weaving in Inner Region (xứ Đàng Trong). The village used to fall into oblivion until its descendants returned to their homeland and woke it up. Since then, the green mulberry fields have gradually been planted again along the alluvial bank of the Thu Bon river; the sound of the loom have appeared again.

According to Mr. Tran Huu Phuong, the 18th generation of the famous family of silk-weaving, Director of Ma Chau silk Co. Ltd., Ma Chau silk is the soul of Ma Chau people. Ma Chau silk dates from the 16th century, having its unique appearance and characteristics because it is made entirely from natural silk by skillful hands of experienced artisans in the village. Ma Chau silk used to go to everywhere in the world through Hoi An trading port. It was the flourishing period of Ma Chau silk village when over 4000 looms worked all days and nights and thousands of hectares of mulberry were planted along the Thu Bon river.
In the early years of the 21st century, Chinese silk and its products were cheap and flooding Vietnamese markets. Ma Chau silk could not compete well and gradually came into oblivion. The famous traditional silk village of Quang Nam seemed to be forgotten completely.

However, Ma Chau silk has revived thanks to the love of traditional silk and creativity of two generations of the Tran.

More and more people have been looking for and buying Ma Chau silk.

The mulberry fields coming back

The birth of Hoi An silk village is also the chance to promote Quang Nam silk. It is owned by Mr. Le Thai Vu,  Director of Quang Nam Silk Joint Stock Company, the person with the passion of Quang Nam silk and the interest in traditional silk weaving. It is the love of silk that helps him build the silk museum at the Hoi An silk village. Besides weaving silk, planting mulberry and raising silkworm are also very important to revive this traditional craft. He has called for help from Quang Nam authorities, building a 150ha material area along the Thu Bon river (belong to Dai Loc, Duy Xuyen and Dien Ban districts). Modern technology is invested with the hope of silk development.

Planting mulberry and raising silk-worm can help improve the locals’ income, according to Director of Dien Quang Agricultural Cooperative Nguyen Duc Thanh, former Director of Quang Nam - Da Nang Export Silk Enterprise. Besides, mulberry can better the environment, protect the land from erosion and landslides.

Vice Chairman of the Quang Nam provincial People's Committee said that it is the good time to revive mulberry cultivation and silkworm raising because of the good signals of the market. Quang Nam is determined to restore the mulberry growing area on the banks of the Thu Bon and Vu Gia rivers. Hopefully, Quang Nam silk with its own beauty will soon be prosperous again, going abroad to people all over the world.