How To Make Round Rattan Bag
Have you ever wondered how a round rattan bag is made? Today I'm going to show you the beauty of this craftsmanship from Bali, Indonesia!
The Making of an Authentic Bali Rattan Bag
The craftsmanship of the round rattan bag has been passed down through generations in Bali, Indonesia.
While our Bali Round Ata Bags by Ganapati are commonly called "rattan bags," it is a misnomer as the plant material used to make our bags is a type of reed vine called "ketak." It is also known as "Ata" (Ah-tah).
What is Ata?
Ata is a family of wild vines that grow in the highland region in Indonesia. The vine is slightly thinner and more flexible than rattan.
The Balinese artisans have long used the Ata plant's leaf ribs and stalk as a source for making ropes, baskets, and various housewares.
To make a round rattan bag from scratch is very time-consuming. It could take up to one month to finish one rattan bag from scratch.
Preparing Ata vine
First, you need to collect the Ata reed vine and split it into 3-foot lengths for more comfortable weaving.
The artisans then wind thinner Ata fibers around sturdier strands to form long, rope-like weaving materials.
To facilitate the shaping process, We soak the strands in river water for a few days.
After the softening process, We then left the strands to dry to condition them properly.
Weaving the conditioned strands into a finished shape can take a skilled artisan up to a week!
After the bag is woven, they are boiled for up to 48 hours to sanitize and disinfect them. This boiling process makes rattan bags more water and bug resistant.
After the boiling process, the bags are put out under the sun to let it dry naturally.
Smoking in Oven
The bags are then smoked over coconut husks in a traditional oven for around 24 to 48 hours to impart their distinctive caramel coloration and continue the drying process.
This smoking process leaves the bag with a slight natural smokey scent that disappears over time.
We sew on the buttons and straps and sew the traditional batik lining into the bag's interior for the last step.
All clips and straps are made of real leather. The button clips are woven into the bag's body, making them strong and firm and challenging to become detached.
After all of this effort, Voilà, a gorgeous Bali round rattan bag is born!
It Takes a Village to Make a Bali Rattan Bag
It is interesting to note that some villagers are better at making rectangular bags, and others are better at making round ones.
Some are good at making the finishing touches, such as sewing buttons and linings. As we said, it takes a village!
Ganapati Crafts Co. Supports Balinese Artisans
Ganapati Crafts Co. purchases these round rattan bags from the artisan group and sell them directly to you with no middle-men. By doing so, we can offer you the finest bags at an affordable price.
Furthermore, we make sure all weavers are fairly compensated which allows them to keep on following their passions while providing for their families.
We thank you for supporting the local Balinese artisans by wearing this beautiful bag!