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May 12, 2017

Toy figurine called "To He" - a little but deserved to be a great artwork by dedicated artists with strong passion to protect and develop this craft.

When the evasion of international books and culture to Vietnam increasingly spreads out, there are some traditional toys which still make its impacts to the youth and social lifestyles nowadays. To get you understand about these treasurable items, we will cover the list with many interesting things of Vietnamese culture.

Let's start first by the toy figurine called "To He", a little but deserved to be a great artwork by dedicated artists with strong passion to protect and develop this craft.

During the past, "to he" represents for heroes and lengends in our traditional and illustated comics, from buffalo, flowers, birds to dragon and historic generals. The origin of this traditional craft is from the North, where are now still maintaining the work via generations. In Ho Chi Minh City, if you are visiting during Lunar New Year, it is quite common to see "to he" sold all in the streets and how children are addicted to this simple toy.

Made by rice powder, "to he" is not easy to made. The secret lies in how you create the dough with perfect sticky rate and standard colors. To create beautiful shapes, artists must be skillful in every steps, from modelling first to ensuring no coloring stains. The process takes about 10 minutes, which doesn't bring too much benefits for artists as those materials are locally available.

Children are usually overwhelmed with the gift as "to he" from their parents. It is proven how they can see the world in just the miraculous manner. Even if they want, they can eat the whole "to he". More importantly, they can learn many easy-to-remember lessons from long stories about historic heroes, legendary notes or just funny things made by tellers.

But now, it seems that the older generation are being attracted by this traditional toys. They get fascinated by the long stories and how "to he" survive today. In Spring Fair, "to he" attracts most visitors. On the Internet, many websites teaching to make "to he" appear. Vietnamese youth has concern of preserving & develop "to he" in future. In addition to society, they start with real actions of interesting comination: teaching unprivileged and handicapped children to make "to he" and then use the profits to maintain the service model. For passionate artists, they hold their presence at parks, fair & children events not only to teach them but also to connect them with Vietnamese traditional stories instead of modern things.

Huong Tra