Hi, Everyone! I can’t believe Hmong New Year celebrations have already started in California! I can’t wait to dress up and browse the stalls. Usually, I spend most of my time shopping. Today, I am featuring Hmong Leng Sayaboury as part of my Hmong Outfit Series. Previously, I featured the White Hmong of Sayaboury.
:: Hmong Leng Sayaboury ::
Hmong Leng and White Hmong of Sayaboury share some similarities in the way they dress such as their head wrap and xauv. They wear xauv that consists of separate rings. Pictured is a modern five layer xauv.
Hmong Leng Sayaboury wear a black shirt with short blue cuff on their tapered long sleeves. The cuff is usually about an inch. Appliqué runs down the front of the shirt opening, but it is usually folded over so that only the lining and needlework shows. The dab tsho is also sewn face down on the back of the shirt.
I’ll admit that this shirt was a little difficult for me at first to wrap my head around as I’m so used to making White Hmong shirts. The dab tsho is attached differently. Also, I was a little confused about attaching the handmade appliqué pieces that I bought for the front of the shirt. Usually, the lining of the shirt is blue and the appliqué is done directly on the shirt fabric. However, I’m not that great at appliqué and it’s quite tedious. I ended up piecing it together my way. At least it looks traditional.
They wear a black sev that consists of three sections and a pink or red sash that is either separate or directly attached to the sev. Like other Hmong Leng groups in Laos, they wear leg wraps or nrhoob. White Hmong don’t wear leg wraps anymore as they transitioned to pants. Deceased White Hmong women are still dressed in leg wraps with their white skirt. The leg wraps are wrapped inwards for the living, and wrapped outwards for the dead. I didn’t grow up wearing leg wraps, occasionally I would opt for leg warmers because I tend to forget the right way to wrap.
:: Moob Naav Tab Dlub::
Hmong Leng speak a different dialect than White Hmong, and it usually throws me off, even the written language is slightly different. This group of Hmong are typically referred to as “hmoob hnav tiab dub/ moob naav tab dlub” (Hmong that wear black skirts) or shortened to “hmoob dub/moob dlub (Black Hmong). However this term “hmoob dub” isn’t exclusive to this group and is slightly misleading. It mostly refers to skirt which isn’t really black but a dark indigo from the dye. The indigo dye can permanently stain fingers and hands.
Unlike other groups of Hmong Leng in Laos, the Hmong Leng of Sayaboury still keep the middle of the skirt or ntu tiab /nthus tab free of ribbons and appliqué. This allows them to show off their exquisite batik skills. The bottom of the skirt or taw tiab / taab tab consists of cross stitch embroidery – usually orange, red, pink, and white thread is used and some pink appliqué runs along the width of the skirt. Lastly, the very bottom of the skirt is white without any appliqué on top.
:: Outfit Details ::
Hmong Leng Sayaboury Shirt/ Tsho & Apron/ Sev
Sash/ Hlab (old)
Hmong Skirt/ Tiab (41 X 20)
Hat/ Phuam Paj (old)
:: Photography ::
Thank you for reading! I can’t wait to wear this outfit for Hmong New Year. I’m probably going to switch out the hat with the blue one that I made for a past tutorial and pair it with a blue sash since my favorite color happens to be blue. Still debating on whether or not to wear leg wraps to New Year. Don’t forget to follow and share the blogpost!
:: Special Thanks ::
I would like to thank Nancy for taking the time to take photos for this blog post and for a future upcoming blog post. Not only that, thank you Ka Vang for modeling for this series as well.
*Outfit details pertains to my outfit, and the links provided are from sellers that I personally purchased from.