Cane and bamboo contribute a great deal to the lifestyle and economy of Assam. Many varieties grow in abundance and each has its own special uses. Bamboo in particular is an integral part of architecture in the villages.
Cane and bamboo are also used in making furniture as well as many other day-to-day articles like beer mugs, sieves and various tools and utensils.
One of the most important articles is the japi, a traditional wide brimmed Assamese hat, made from strips of bamboo and tokow paat (dried palm leaves) and used by outdoors workers for protection from the sun. These days they are also used as decorative items in drawing rooms and have become a popular souvenir for tourists.
Other typical articles made from bamboo are baskets in a variety of patterns, shapes and sizes. The large ones are called duli or tali and the small ones khorahiand are used for storing and carryng different things like rice, paddy and betel nuts. Baskets are usually made by the men of the family.
The men also make other items like chalani (sieve), kula (winnowing pan), fishing traps, fishing apparatus, fences, musical instruments, walking sticks, hand fans, floor mats, umbrella handles and even tea-trays, some of which are promoted in other parts of the country and even exported internationally.