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The textiles, paintings and sculptures represent the highest achievements of Tibetan handicrafts.


  Tibetan Carpets: Woven using a unique technique, these carpets are durable, comfortable, gorgeous and are especially pleasing because of their auspicious patterns. They can also be used as cushions, mattresses, tapestries and backrests. Tibetan carpets are considered one of the three most famous carpets in the world. Gyangtse County of Shigatse, known as 'Hometown of Rugs', is the most famous for Tibetan carpets.

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Tibetan costume

  Tibetan Woolen Cloths: The most famous Tibetan woolen cloths are made in Gyangtse, Dranang County of Shannan and Markham County of Chamdo, which have already had thousands of years' history. These wools are delicate, smooth, thick and waterproof, so they are often used as materials for the exotic and pretty Tibetan costumes, boots, hats, aprons and other things. The best aprons are from a town in Gonggar County, Shannan, which is not far from Gonggar Airport of Lhasa.
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  Tibetan Quilts: Also made of the local wools, Tibetan quilts are soft, delicate, warm and durable, and are good choices for the windy and chilly living conditions. They generally have a weight of 5 kg. (11 pounds) - 10 kg. (22 pounds). They are mainly made in Lhasa, Shigatse and Shannan, while the best is in Shannan.

  Tents: For those who prefer outdoor activities, a Tibetan tent is a good accompaniment. There are three options for you: well-knit and waterproof woolen tents, flowery canvas tents and common cloth tents.

 Woolen handbags: They are made of wools and are very delicate and pretty with colorful decorations. It is a wise choice to buy one for carrying foods and some small tools!

Tibet Thangka


  Thangka (scroll paintings) are worthy investments to remember Tibet. Most of this artwork conveys some religious meaning, through lifelike religious figures, propitious symbols and vivid stories. So Tibetans take them as spiritual deities and worship them piously. Thangkas are carefully painted, using pigments from minerals, plants, and even the powders of pure gold, silver and precious stones, meaning the bright colors endure for a long time. For this elaborate work, you can pay a high price, varying from hundreds to tens of thousands of RMB. You'd better ask an expert to evaluate them if you would like to collect one. Chamdo is a region where the best Thangkas are created.

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Tibetan sculptures have also won high acclaims throughout the world. Apart from the common Buddhist statues in Tibet, other metallic, stone, earthen and wooden objects also become excellent crafts under the dexterous hands of Tibetan sculptors.

  Wooden Bowls: These are a favorite among all ethnic groups in Tibet. They often take along a bowl to fill with food and drinks? when going out, even when visiting another family. Made of various excellent woods, these bowls are not easy to break and very pretty due to their delicate sculptures. Some of them also have a silver cover, or are wrapped with pieces of silver plates in their brims. The wooden bowls of Menpa minorities and Purang County, Ngari are the most well-known.

In addition, other wooden sculptured furniture, like Tibetan cabinets and tables are also very exquisite.

Tibetan furniture, Tibetan handicraft

  Masks: They are mainly used in the performances of Tibetan Opera, Chamdo Dance, and as a decoration hanging in the temples of Tibet. The sculptures include figures of deities, devils and animal totems.

  Horn and Bone Wares: Ox is a common and sacred animal in Tibet, which can be made into various artworks. Horn combs do not easily produce static when being used, and are said to be healthy for hair, brain and head. There are also many bone-sculptured wares like amulets, necklaces, bracelets, etc.

  Gold and Silver Wares: The manufacture of these gold and silver wares is the most complicated traditional handicraft in Tibet. They need to be carefully forged and then sculptured into various fine patterns. Tibetan knives and various ornaments like bracelets, necklaces, rings, earrings and headgears are the most popular souvenirs. The Tibetan knives are mainly made in Lhasa, Shigatse and Chamdo, of which Lhatse (Shigatse) is the most famous.

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There are also many other beautiful handicrafts in Tibet, such as Tibetan soft jades, which have various colors of white, pale, green, yellow, black and blood red. The potteries of Maldrogongkar County, Lhasa are also very famous in Tibet.

 Tips for shopping: Barkhor Street  in Lhasa is the best place to purchase all of these handicrafts. There are hundreds of stores and stalls for you to choose from.

Comments and Questions

Im looking for any information on how to learn to make the Tibetan Medicine bracelets. With copper,silver,and brass. Im fascinated by the different designs and would like make myslef a few. Thanks for your time,,,have a wonderful day.........


12/23/2008 9:51:00 PM


Asked by mark bockrath (United States)