Made in Mandalay

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Mandalay’s artisans have excelled for centuries in the ten traditional crafts or “flowers” of woodwork, masonry, sculpture, stone cutting, painting, gold and silver work, stucco, blacksmithing, bronze casting and lacquer ware. Modern styles and tastes have changed the designs and modified some of the forms, but the ancient crafts are very much part of modern design planning especially for religious buildings and artifacts.

 

Bronze Casting (Pantin)
The ancient arts of bronze-casting are losing a race with time. Find them still in the Thampawaddy Ward in Mandalay where ancient bellows and open fires form the molds and decorative elements for gongs, pagoda umbrellas, bells, Buddhas and intricate metal artwork. Examples of ancient and modern bronze castings can be seen in every pagoda and many handicraft shops.

 

Stone (Pantamauk) and Wood (Panbut) carving
Stone carving is found in the Kyauk Sit Ward by Mahamuni Pagoda and wood carving is located at Ywar Tha Gyi Village.  Outstanding examples can be seen at the Bargaya Monastery in Inwa/Ava, and the Shwe Inpin Monastery. The stone and wood sculptures are usually of Buddha, images associated with Buddhism, animals and mythical creatures.

 

Tapestry (Shwe Chi Hto)
This art is said to have originated in Myanmar a thousand years ago, and was used to create the heavily embroidered robes of the Kings and Queens. The Tapestry Ward is still located close to the Palace in the Shwe Gyi Do Quarter where family enterprises create traditional and modern designs from velvet, gold and silver thread, tiny beads, sequins, pearls and  semi-precious stones of different sizes – pillow-covers to wall-hangings.

 

Myint Myint Khin Htoe Mont
Generations have come to this 100 year old shop to buy Htoe Mont & La Mont (Moon Cake). Starting off with only one shop, there are now many branches around Mandalay and in other cities. Every day, they produce over 40 kinds of food such as Coconut Fried Htoe Mont, Marsakat, Eiton, Ha La Wa and Banana Sanonmaking. They are open from 5am to 10pm.

 

Shwe Nagar Sandals & Slippers
Established in 1989, this is the most famous sandal and slipper shop in Mandalay. They combine modern styles with ancient techniques by following the traditional way of making the shoes out of palm leaves, water hyacinths, tea leaves, screw pine, reeds; wrapping them in velvet, and the covering them in sequins or tapestry.

 

Shwe Sin Tine Silkware
This silk weaving company in Amarapura was established over a 100 years ago.  They make over 50 different kinds of silk products, and have a unique knack of always making sure their products match the fashion of the day. Their shop is open from 8am to 6pm and you can also visit the workshop to see the silk being made.

 

U Kar Ka & Daw Sein
This famous dried tea leaves shop was opened 86 years ago. They sell 15 different kinds of products with prices ranging from 50 Kyats to 2000 Kyats.The tea has a one year shelf life so you can stock up without worrying that the tea will go bad.  The tea is known for its great smell and taste.

 

Ma C Mar Preserved Soured Fruits
This is the only Preserved Soured Fruit shop in Mandalay and has been open for 50 years. They preserve several fruits such as palm, mango and damsons. During the winter, they make their famous seasonal special Carrambolla Preserved.

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