I travelled to Sapa along with 16 fashion students I was teaching to learn about Vietnamese ethnic minorities and collect fabrics and trimming for future collections. This journey was most inspirational not only because of the bright, vivid countryside and landscape. But also because of the wonderful and unique tribes that reside there, The Red Zao, Black Hmong and Flower Hmong, all living together harmoniously, preserving traditional culture growing there own hemp, spinning it into fabric, indigo dying and utilizing intricate embroidery techniques.
I asked them if they could teach me some of there techniques, 'No' they said 'We pass these down to our children and don't want people stealing our ideas' I was really happy that they were doing this.
Another Inspiration to me was the Sapa Image Gallery a photoagraphy gallery, the photography displayed in our gallery is the work of David Martin. He spent severial years in the Sapa area to produce this collection of photography which gives an in-depth look into the culture & people of my tribe, the Black Mong, and the other tribes in the area. Most likely this is the largest single collection of this nature to come out of Sapa. Some of these images show you the daily activities and ways in which they produce fabric.