English | Dzongkha Saturday, July 20, 2019

Getting acquainted with art of weaving at RTA

Sonam Choden & Sonam Phuntsho, Thimphu
Dec 26, 2017

An encouraging number of young girls is getting enrolled at the Royal Textile Academy (RTA) to learn the traditional art of weaving. Girls as young as 10 years come to the textile academy, every winter for this programme, which is provided free of cost.

Most of them are students who have decided to spend their winter vacation fruitfully. As a beginner, they are taught to weave a simple scarf using the traditional loom. They also learn how to prepare warp and weft yarn.

However, for these girls, the weaving program has far reaching effect both in terms of opportunities and options in future. “It was very difficult as a beginner but now I know most of the things about weaving and it’s much easier. It will help to earn a living in future,” said one of the participants, Sonam Dolma.

Others couldn’t agree more. “If I don’t get government job in future, I can always have a backup plan and that is to weave and earn a living,” said Tandin Wangmo, also a participant in weaving program.

While some others feel, such activity is a great initiative to help preserve the age old tradition which is fast vanishing. “It is going to benefit because I could spend my winter vacation and I could preserve my culture by weaving. I would like to request youth not to waste their winter vacation. You should participate in this kind of programs,” said Tshering Pelden, who is also learning the art of weaving.

The RTA, till date, has trained over 50 girls through this winter weaving program. Each girl is paid a stipend of Nu 3500. After the completion of a month-long program, the products- which are mostly the scarves- are sold to tourists through the Academy’s Museum shop.

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