Saturday, May 14, 2011
My very own handmade Hakka Oil Paper Umbrella
So pretty, so strong, so unique.
I wanted one.
I chose my favorite.
How could I resist?
I asked the young female cashier about it's history.
My father made it from bamboo. My grandmother painted it. The Chinese words wish you luck and happiness. It takes a month to make one. These umbrellas are special and will bring you good luck.
The family run business is quite famous in Taiwan. It is one of the only remaining paper oil umbrella workshops in Taiwan, and perhaps the world. The Hakka people used the umbrellas in their everyday life. They are also used as wedding presents with parents giving them to their children on their special day.
In 1989, after watching his skilled parents make umbrellas, Lee Ming-Hsiang decided to open a business of his own. I am glad he did. You can visit the family run business's website here.
Meinong is about a 50 minute drive from downtown Kaohsiung.
You can buy your own oil paper umbrella from the Lee family store. Directions below.