Specificities of Arts and Crafts in Bumthang

The most representative and typical craft of Bumthang are the woollen textiles, made of sheep or yak hair, and called yatra. They are bands, several meters long which are woven today on the pedal loom but until the mid 1950s on a backstrap loom. Yatra are often decorated with brightly colored geometric patterns. Cut and stitched, yatra are traditionally used as blankets, rain coats, sofa covers but today are also made into jackets. Most of the women in Bumthang weave at home but there are now workshops in Chume valley, especially in Zugne village.

Basketry is done in the Tang valley but in the houses as an evening passtime and there are no “professional weavers” places.

Mask making is an art practised in Chhoekhor by specialised men, usually with a religious background. Like basketry, it is a seasonal and supplementary activity practised in the houses and there are no formal place to see the craftsmen.


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