Buddhist Nuns Participate in Tibetan Handicrafts Exhibition

The tailoring program at Dolma Ling Nunnery and Institute received a big boost in July when the nuns were invited to show their handicrafts at a special two-day Art and Craft’s Exhibition organized by the Department of Education of the Central Tibetan Administration.

No other nunneries and monasteries were invited to the exhibition that took place on July 25th and 26th.

Kalon Lobsang Sangay speaking to Tibetan Buddhist nun

The Chief guest at the exhibition was Kalon Lobsang Sangay who was very impressed by the display. He spoke encouragingly to the nuns.

The exhibition was organized to introduce traditional Tibetan crafts to 25 teachers and students from 9 different schools located in Himachal Pradesh, Dehradun and Nepal. The Dolma Ling Nunnery Product Manager, Mr. Tenzin Yanga, and two nuns from the tailoring section attended the exhibition.

Tibetan Buddhist nuns at handicraft exhibition in India

The nuns displaying the many handicrafts that they make to generate income for the nunnery. The tailoring and handicraft program at Dolma Ling Nunnery and Institute is one of several self-sufficiency programs at the nunnery.

The tailoring program at Dolma Ling Nunnery had a modest start. The plan was just to make nuns robes so that the nuns wouldn’t have to go to the market and pay for the service.

Now, over the years, the tailoring program has expanded greatly and is quite successful. There are two lay staff and a few nuns with good tailoring and sewing skills working in this section.

Tibetan nun giving lecture

A Tibetan Buddhist nun from Dolma Ling Nunnery speaks to students from 9 schools during a special Tibetan handicrafts workshop and exhibition in July

Among the products that the nuns make for sale are prayer flags in 3 different sizes, Tibetan door curtains, handsewn nun and monk dolls, mala bags and a variety of bags of different sizes and purposes.

The nuns make a wide range of long malas (prayer beads) and wrist malas and each is blessed by the nuns.

The Tibetan Nuns Project sells 14 different types of long malas and wrist malas made from natural materials such as stone, wood and bone. The wrist malas are a variation of the standard 108-bead mala and are very popular with visitors to the nunnery.

These fair-trade handicrafts that the nuns make are sold through both the nunnery shop and the Tibetan Nuns Project online store.

The revenue generate helps to support the nunnery and cover costs such as food and classes for the over 230 nuns who live at Dolma Ling.

Tibetan Buddhist nun at workshop for students

A Tibetan Buddhist nun from Dolma Ling Nunnery and Institute shows young students how to put robes on the monk and nun dolls. These handsewn dolls are made by the nuns and are a popular item for sale at the nunnery and through the Tibetan Nuns Project online store.

The nuns gave a short workshop about their handmade dolls, demonstrating to the students how to put robes on the monk and nun dolls. The school participants enjoyed it very much.

Tibetan Buddhist nun at workshop

The nuns took an active part in the block-printing workshop before giving their own workshop to the students.

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