SAPA ATTRACTIONS: HANDICRAFT IN SAPA WOOD STEEL AND SILVER: TRADITIONAL SKILLS,STILL UNRECOGNISED
Wood, steel and silver: traditional skills, still unrecognised
Thanks to the wide diversity of wood species and to the carpenters and joiners€™ know-how, the houses, furniture and all the wooden objects are still made locally. One of the most famous wood species in the Lao Cai area is peumou (Fokienia Hodginsii), a species of slow-growing cypress whose wood is rot-proof. Chinese buyers have been paying a heavy price for it for over a century.
Using reclaimed materials, blacksmiths used to make ploughshares, knives and trivets. Despite the competition of industrial products, the high-quality knives and pruning knives made by the Hmong are still much sought-after by farmers from all ethnic groups.

Silver jewellery is still made by numerous ethnic groups. The Hmong from Sa Pa and the Dao are renowned for their necklaces consisting of several silver circles put together €“ the weight of the jewel is also a wealth and status symbol as silver metal used to be one of the main ways of hoarding wealth. The Tày from Vƒn Bàn make beautiful silver bangles. Depending on the area and on the subgroups they belong to, the Hmong and the Dao are distinguished by the shape of their earrings.