Visitors to Dinh Yen village in Dong Thap province’s Lap Vo district in the Mekong Delta are sure to be fascinated by the colourful mats there.
Red, green, yellow, and purple are the main colours used and they can be seen almost everywhere in the village, which lies along the Hau River.
Some 3,000 people from several generations are involved in mat making. There are many elderly craftsmen still working in the village.
The mat makers grow the sedge they require along the river.
According to the local elderly of the village, mat making emerged as a profession in Dinh Yen in the 1920s.
Without enough raw materials back then, villagers had to source them from nearby provinces.
The craft peaked in the 1980s when the village’s products were exported to Thailand, Cambodia and East European countries.
Nowadays villagers use machines to save time though the details on the mats are still completely made by hand.
The village’s craft was recognised as an intangible national heritage in 2013.