RM0.00

No products in the cart.

RM0.00

No products in the cart.

Of Innovation, Japanese Ceramic Researcher and Labu Sayong

Labu sayong is a traditional Malay clay pitcher that originated from the village of Sayong, Perak. It is a part of Malay pottery history and is known for its unique qualities. The water stored inside a labu sayong becomes colder than usual, and some people believe that drinking this water can help refresh the body.

Labu sayong was originally made using a pinching technique, where women would skillfully create the pitchers by hand under their elevated houses on stilts. This approach was quite inefficient, as skilled artisans could only produce a few pieces daily.

In 1986, a Japanese ceramic researcher from Malaysia’s Standards and Industrial Research Institute (SIRIM) introduced a revolutionary technique during a visit to Koperasi Kg. Kepala Bendang.

This technique, known as slip casting or moulding, was shared with labu sayong artisans and instructors at the Malaysian Handicraft Development Corporation (MHDC). The locals call these moulds labu acu. It turned out to be an easy-to-learn method that quickly produced many pieces of labu sayong in a short time.

This innovation resulted in a transition from crafting under houses to using workshops equipped with modern tools. Six other villages in the Sayong district also participated in this transformation: Kg. Talang Ulu, Kg. Sayong Lembah, Kg. Temiang, Kg. Pauh, Kg. Sayong Sekolah, Kg. Bukit Lada, and Kg. Padang Serai.

Within these workshops, modern machines and tools have simplified the crafting process, marking a departure from the traditional stilted houses that were once synonymous with labu sayong production.

Arguably, innovation can help preserve and pass on these age-old skills to future generations. This is true for labu sayong as well – without innovation, the tradition of pottery-making in Perak might fade away someday.

Research has shown that in the 1980s, only six local families were still making these clay pitchers using traditional methods. By 2010, only two of them continued this practice.

We certainly hope that labu sayong will not disappear like the traditional Malay pottery that was lost in 1995 – Pasu Kechur from Perlis. MHDC said that it went extinct because no one learned how to make it.

Labu Sayong is a Malaysian heritage that embodies Malay history and culture. It has evolved and adapted over the years, transitioning from traditional methods to contemporary techniques

Innovation has played a dual role in preserving and advancing this art form, yet it also raises questions about authenticity and identity.

Striking a harmonious balance between innovation and tradition is vital, as is passing down the skills and knowledge of labu sayong. Beyond its practicality, labu sayong stands as a symbol of Malay culture and history.


References:

Haron, H., Yunos, N., Zainal Amri, N. H., & Ali Yasin, S. M. (2018). Labu ACU: an innovation for commercialization of Malaysian pottery heritage. International Journal of Mechanical Engineering and Technology (IJMET)9(7), 1494-1502.

Haron, H., Noh, L. M. M., Ismail, N. H., Manan, S. A., & Mutalib, N. A. (2014). Aesthetic aspects of moulded clay pitcher. Middle-East Journal of Scientific Research21(8), 1264-1275.

Arifin, A. (2015). TRADITIONAL MALAY POTTERY OF KUALA KANGSAR: ITS HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT. Kajian Malaysia: Journal of Malaysian Studies33.

Topax by Tiffin Jeiwa

This tiffin carrier from Tiffin Jeiwa features a beautiful hand-painted design. The waterproof and non-fading paint ensures that your carrier will look great for years to come. Made of high-quality stainless steel, the carrier is durable and easy to clean. You can even place it in the freezer or chiller, making it perfect for storing leftovers or packed lunches.
RM380.00

Rattan Flower Vase

Measuring 21 centimeters tall by 9 centimeters wide, our Rattan Flower Vase is the ideal size for holding fresh-cut flowers, branches, or dried botanical arrangements. The sturdy base and wide opening ensure stability and secure display of your floral creations. Crafted to last, this vase combines durability with timeless beauty.  
RM56.00

Labu Sayong Corak Tiga - Small (Set of 3)

Are you looking for a unique gift that's perfect for weddings, door gifts, or souvenirs? Labu sayong corak satu are the perfect choice! The perfect size also allows you to hold the heritage of pottery-making in the palm of your hand.

RM30.00

Tudung Saji - Pink

Its simple and warm design adds a charming touch to your dining experience, making it perfect for any occasion. Shop now to enhance your kitchen accessories with this stylish option.
RM57.00

Rustic Rattan Tray Basket - Set of 3

The versatile rectangular shape makes it suitable for serving food and drinks, displaying decorative items, or storing small items. Don't miss out on this must-have functional and stylish home decor piece.
RM103.00

Kain Batik Sarung - Variation Three (Corak Lima)

Arina Batik comes in a range of exclusive, beautiful, and modern colour combinations that are unique and contemporary. Don't miss the opportunity to own a piece of this beautiful and unique batik, made with high-quality materials and stunning design.
RM29.00

Rattan Round Umbrella Stand

The warm tones and natural texture of the rattan add a cozy feel to any space, while the versatile design makes it a perfect addition to any home décor. Stay prepared for any weather while adding a touch of rustic charm to your home with the Rattan Round Umbrella Stand.
RM95.00

Labu Sayong Corak Satu - Small (Red & White)

Are you looking for a unique gift that's perfect for weddings, door gifts, or souvenirs? Labu sayong corak satu are the perfect choice! The perfect size also allows you to hold the heritage of pottery-making in the palm of your hand.
RM12.00

Shop

This is it. Your search for iconic handicrafts of Malaysia starts here.

Blog

Documenting places we visited and what we learned from such visits.

Sell with us

We're always looking for talented artisans to collaborate with.

Let's talk

How can we help? Let's get in touch. We'd love to hear from you.

error: Content is protected.