Kadian: Small Tibetan Rug
Tibet is famous for Tibetan wool weaving crafts. Pulu and carpet are most famous among products of the craft. Tibetan carpets mainly include “sadian” (carpet for covering floors) and “kadian” (puff, a plush mat for coving cushions). By size, those larger than 18 square feet are called carpet, and the others are called “kadian”. Kadian, also called small Tibetan rug, are Tibetan people's favorite cushions. They are usually about 0.9 meters by 1.8 meters in size -- this size fits the function as both a seating area and small bed in many Tibetan houses. Gyangze is extolled as the “hometown of kadian” as kadians of Gyangze are most famous.
Ka of Kadian means "above" in Tibetan. This is because the Kadian is placed up above the seat. Traditionally, Kadian, made of colorful cashmere and felt, wears well. It is used for sitting or sleeping on, rather than for spreading out as floor coverings. It can be used to keep warm, and is waterproof. It is not only comfortable bedding but also a beautiful adornment.
The felt produced on the Tibet plateau is hard but flexible, and contains long fibers, which makes it good raw material for Kadian.
Kadian is produced all over Tibet. The ones from Gyangze of Shigatse area are special. The area of Gyangze, with a history of 600 years in rug-making, has long been famous as 'the home of Kadian.' In Gyangze, every family knows how to make carpets. Gyangze is well known for not only its singular weaving technique, but its especially bright colors. All the dyes are made from local leaves, the roots of herbs, and mineral stones, except for red and black. These colors are very bright and colorfast.
Kadian of Gyangze is not only famous in China but also has a big market in India, Nepal, and Bhutan. Gyangze carpet, Turkish carpet and Persian carpet are known as the three most famous carpets in the world.