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The Hmong are a group of people from the mountainous regions of China, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand. Hmong are also one of the sub-groups of the Miao ethnicity in southern China.  I had seen pictures of Hmong people before–and fell head-over-heels in love with the bright, sometimes even florescent clothing and accessories. I found a skirt at Shareen Vintage in her ‘costume area’ that was a wrap-around and fell in love with it–not only because I knew I’d be able to wrap it around my waist throughout my whole pregnancy, but it was made of this thick, beautiful linen with tons of little pleats. Score. I didn’t know where the skirt was from, but while shopping on Etsy recently, I came across another, similar one that said it was Hmong–and that got me doing Hmong clothing and accessory searches all over the web. The search let me to the most beautiful and vibrant pieces–with intricate patterns, embroideries, lots of pom-poms (which you know I love) and one helluva a color palate–not to mention gorgeous, chunky silver jewelry.

Today I’m doing a round up with some of my favorite Hmong designs I found on that search.  One of my favorites is a vintage Hmong tribe cushion cover that is made from old Hmong baby carriers from Thailand. This cushion will be given to one lucky reader by Gypsy River, an Australia-based blog and shop that carries striking pieces from around the globe. (The pillow is valued at $93.) To enter the giveaway you must be a follower of this blog– Next visit the Gypsy River blog and shop: Gypsy River and leave a comment here stating which item you’d love to have in your home (be sure to leave your email in the comment so that I can reach you if you are the winner). This giveaway is open to readers worldwide. The giveaway will close on Friday, April 6th at 5pm PST. Good luck!

Image Sources:
Black Hmong women at the Sapa trading post in Vietnam, August 1999. Photo by Bob Tubbs
Photo of Flower Hmong women in Bac Ha, Vietnam, August 1999. Photo by Bob Tubbs.
Hobo Bag
Gypsy River Pillow
Silver Pendant
Accordian Skirt
pom pom belt
Striped Tote

40 Responses to Hmong-Inspired + Giveaway!
  1. Sarah says:

    I love that you discovered Hmong culture- This is a great collection of colorful things. Before moving to LA I lived in Minneapolis which has the biggest population of Hmong people in the world (weird, right?) There are a lot of Hmong vendors at the Minneapolis farmers market, and I used to love looking through their stands- something about a bunch of mysterious asian greens next to a colorful pile of handmade wallets is fascinatingly beautiful.
    And thanks for introducing us to Gypsy River- what a great store and blog! I’m a sucker for Moroccan wedding blankets, so of course that is what I would love in my home!


  2. Jennifer says:

    gorgeous vibrant colors! I would love the “vintage kantha quilt” from the shop. Such beautiful texture and linens.

  3. Nina Hanaoka says:

    Wow, they have a lot of good stuff! You’ve been pointing us towards all the good Etsy shops lately!

    I would choose any of the vintage fabric laptop cases, and maybe use it for a clutch also:)


  4. Sarah says:

    love love love! i have a bag from a visit to hong kong that i treasure. i would love something for the home, a vintage hand embroidered wall hanging, to brighten up our grey portland days! lovely!

  5. The Waits says:

    love the shop!!! I am really LOVING the Vintage Suzani Throw!! it is so beautiful, and would make a great statement piece in any room!
    thanks for such a wonderful giveaway opportunity!
    ps, i really need to look up Hmong culture/people. i have dont really know anything about them!

  6. What a great discovery and give-away, Justina! I enjoyed browsing the Gypsy River shop and blog! I love all their cushions, especially the vintage Laos embroidered collection!!

  7. Angelina says:

    I would love to win this. I just subscribe to your blog, and left comment on the gypsyriver blog. They are gorgeous!

  8. Carmen says:

    WOW! I can’t believe I have never seen this shop before!!! I love all of the Suzani’s, it’s so hard to choose….I also love the necklaces. I think if I had to choose one I would probably choose the vintage embroidered bag, I alos second the idea of using the laptop case as a clutch.

  9. great designs, very similar to the textiles made by mayan women in the Chichicastenango region in Guatemala :)

    following on GFC :)

  10. Meg S says:

    How lovely! I especially like the vintage hand embroidered wall hanging. Beautiful!

    mysecretagentloverman at gmail dot com

  11. Alma says:

    Thank you for sponsoring this lovely collection of this intriguing culture. I am follower here now and have been a follower of gypsy river for awhile. I loooove the vintage Hmong bag. Good luck to all!

  12. Katy says:

    I am so excited about this givaway,I have been fallowing both blogs for a while,and have been watching all the ggreat things she just brought back from her trip!she had a peak this week of her new things that are not up yet! I am watching closley,so what I want is a feather ring I saw on her blog today,and a silver bird necklace I saw also.
    Thank you Katy

  13. bethany says:

    i’m so glad i found your blog through gypsy river! I love her Vintage Suzani throws—all of them. Glad I am now following you!


  14. Hi! Big fan of Gypsy River and lovin the new stock Kerrie has hand picked on her travels. The throws are gorgwa but I really do admire the cushion up for grabs. It would get along nicely with my eclectic collection I already have on my couch. Super stoked to have found your Blog via Gypsy River’s post! Another like minded creative to swoon over. alicia_bowman_finn@live.com.au, Beatnikflair.blogspot.com.au :)

  15. Justine Thompson says:

    Thank you so much for continuously bringing culturally rich corners of the world closer to my doorstep! I absolutely adore the turquoise feather bracelet from Gypsy River.
    Peace, love&light <3
    Ontario, Canada

  16. Alison says:

    I would love any of the wall hangings, or the throws, or…….!

    Also wanted to say, I think my baby is due around the same time as yours, so am enjoying all your posts about lil boomba!


  17. I just added Gypsy River to my Etsy favourites – what a beautiful shop! Without question, the item I would most love is the Vintage Morrocan Wedding Blanket. I have had my eye on one for a while and have to pull the trigger one day! Thanks for the awesome giveaway and have a great weekend!

  18. coxy says:

    oh my its all so gorgeous but i think my favourite is the indian embroidered throw! what a lovely blog you have.

    amy x

  19. Grenadine says:

    I love Hmong arts and craft, I brought back a wonderfull bag from my trip to thailand, I love it!!!!
    So I love approximately everything in the Gypsy River shop !^^ if I have to choose, my favorite thing is the sterling silver ethnic earrings!

    Thanks for making us discover this shop!


  20. happy people says:

    I discovered some years ago Hmong arts and craft and I love it !
    And the shop Gipsy River is great ! I love everything ! My favorite thing is the vintage Hmong tribe bag.
    Thanks a lot Justina and Gipsy River !


  21. Stzeus says:

    The Vintage Suzani Throw is my favorite! I love bright colors that make you smile… that throw definitely does just that. :)


  22. manda says:

    Beautiful things. I like the Vintage Indian throw. Lovely.

  23. Diana says:

    I LOVE all Gypsy River’s things and have been a fan for some time so it’s difficult to choose but the vintage hand embroidered wall hanging on the shop’s first page is gorgeous and certainly my frontrunner! Thanks for all the lovely Hmong photos–I own some Hmong pieces and really adore all their lovely textile arts.

  24. GB says:

    I’ve been a fan of the Gypsy River blog for a while now–love her aesthetic! I’d love to get my hands on one of her vintage banjara bags. The pillow being offered in the giveaway would look perfect in the study. I already follow your blog, please count me in for the drawing!

  25. I love the vibrant colors the Hmong people incorporate into their pieces. It was pretty hard to decide which lovely piece would go great with my new apartmen,t because I loved them all but the Vintage Suzani’s caught my eye immediately. It would give my room the warm and cozy look I’m hoping too attain.

    best wishes,

  26. Tara-Fied says:

    Just discovered your blog, and already in love with the ideas and discoveries!
    I fell for the Vintage Laos Fabric Bag immediately, so that’s my choice! :)

    love & light,

  27. Wow – amazing. All of it! ha! The necklaces are amazing, the bags with the leather straps too, but biggest impact in my home would probably be made by the colorful Suzani throw. Thanks for sharing and for your ever inspirational blog.

  28. What a wonderful post! I love all the vibrant colors in the Hmong designs. I am a new follower of your blog, found you via Pinterest…my latest addiction. I checked out Gypsy River on Etsy as well as the Gypsy River blog and my favorite item that I would love in my home is Vintage Indian Embroidered Throw. I cannot get over how beautiful it is.

    My email, if I’m lucky enough to win is aglamoursoldier(at)gmail(dot)com

    Thanks for the giveaway! Jen

  29. melissa says:

    I just discovered your blog. It is so unique and it has everything I love…travel, fashion and FOOD!

    And now to this giveaway! Amazing, incredible and delightful. I am going nuts over the vintage suzani throw but also totally in-love with the vintage hip flask!

    I can be reached here:


  30. Anonymous says:

    oh such beautiful colors and textures! This would be such a great win!

  31. Mrs. Z says:

    Was connected to your blog today by a friend, what a treat! After shopping at gypsy river on etsy, my favorite piece is the vintage indian embroidered throw.

    For the giveaway, my email address is meghan.zanskas@gmail.com


  32. kellijean says:

    Amazing items! Two of my favorites were the vintage morrocan wedding blanket and the vintage kantha quilt. Absolutely beautiful!



    Justina, I absolutely love your blog. You post the most beautiful things! And I’ve just got to have that pillow – the colors are incredible!


    Thanks, dear!

  33. shayna says:

    head over heels in love with everything. i’m especially in love with the “vintage hand embroidered wall hanging”.
    thanks for a lovely giveaway!


  34. I love everything Gypsy River has to sell. But if I had to choose one it would be the vintage indian embroidered throw. So, so beautiful.

    And thank you for such a fantastic giveaway! <3

    P.S. my email is willow_earth@hotmail.com

    Sally xx

  35. Anonymous says:


  36. Jo says:

    I would have loved to have that silver pendant! Too bad I wasn’t able to catch this giveaway in time. I’m so interested in their culture, arts, and their sovereign coins.

  37. Manju G says:

    LOVE all of these gorgeous banjara bags, so beautifully produced and perfect for any occasion. Such a beautiful blog you wrote.

    You can find some more on my etsy shop as well




  38. Tiffany Vang says:

    Your picture on Pinterest caught my attention. I am Hmong and am very please and happy to see that you like our culture, designs, and embrioderies. Beautiful webpage you have here. You should travel to Thailand and Laos to experience more beautiful embriodery. I’m from MN and we have a big base of shopping mall or what we call it “Hmong Village” that have lots of similiar design like this for sale in the indoor store if you don’t want to travel far. I go for the food when I’m there.

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