Anji bamboo fan
Bamboo fan from Anji county, Huzhou [Photo/zj.zjol.com.cn]
Zhangwu town in Anji county, Huzhou is home to the bamboo fan. Beginning at the end of the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127), men of letters used the Zhangwu bamboo fan, which was born in Zhangwu. The town is the largest bamboo fan production site and the largest bamboo fan supplier for Japan and Korea. The industry in the town has an annual output of 30 million fans and an output value of more than 200 million yuan ($28.11 million).
Anji bamboo, also known as the Baiyu bamboo ("Baiyu" means white jade in Chinese), is most suitable for folding fans. The raw material of Anji fans must be bamboos with an age of six years, a diameter of nine inches to a foot, a length of about 33 centimeters, a uniform skin color and with no damage from worms.
The manufacturing process of Anji bamboo fans requires 108 steps. The preparation of raw material alone needs 11. To ensure a more stable appearance and a better color, the dried bamboo pieces need to be stored for 10 years before they are ready to be used in a delicate folding fan and to be capable of modification from time to time.
"The folding fan made with the ancient craft does not need polish, wax or stick beams to preserve tradition and authenticity," said Zhang Beijing, an inheritor of the Anji bamboo fan.
Modeling of bamboo fan [Photo/zj.zjol.com.cn]