|The Kho Mu weave bamboo carriers for daily use.
During their nomadic life, the Kho Mu made rudimentary items such as knives and sticks with which to dig holes to sow seeds, hunt, and collect wild vegetables. They wove bamboo and rattan to make containers, trays, papooses, and stools. They used their dexterity and creativity to produce products for daily use. Now the Kho Mu can earn a living from selling craft items.
A Kho Mu man, named Xeo Van Hoe, said “All the Kho Mu can weave bamboo products. Older people teach the younger. We sell them or use them at home.”
Besides utensils, the Kho Mu also make worship items. Their products are attractive and durable. They use a variety of weaving techniques.
Nguyen Trung Thanh, a collector of ethnic craft products, said “The Eng, or the papoose, is the most popular carrier. It demands advanced weaving techniques. It has large handles and a piece of cloth similar to a yoke that the wearer puts across his forehead to keep a balance between his body and the package on his back.”
The Kho Mu believe decorating containers of rice or steamed rice flower images will bring prosperity to the owners.
Bamboo and rattan are also used to make musical instruments. Cong Dan, a Kho Mu man said “To make a panpipe, we use a young bamboo tube. It requires patience and skill. I’m teaching my children to make musical instruments to preserve our group’s traditional craft.”
Weaving bamboo products is a major source of income for the Kho Mu. They have formed weaving cooperatives to promote their craft and improve the living standard of villagers.