Northern-Style Fabrics

The northern highlands comprise of various ethnic groups with their own traditional costume. The Thai Yuan, or Khon Mueang, in the plains and in the city areas, for example, have their own dressing style much different from that of the hill tribes.

In the old days, male Thai Yuan descendants wore a piece of thigh-length wrap, in order to show off elaborate tattoo designs on their body. They did not cover the upper part of the body, but they wore a long decorative piece of cloth across the shoulders. The aristocrats, however, wore a shirt with a long piece of decorative cloth tied around their waist. Women wore an ankle-length robe with horizontal stripes but no blouse. They covered the upper part of the body with a wrap and did their hair in a high chignon decorated with a hairpin or flowers. This dressing style has been depicted in several murals in temples around Chiang Mai.

Presently, local Lanna women wear long robes, but they also wear blouses instead of chest wraps, the practice observed since the Fifth Reign.

The blouses are usually made from off-white cotton in a T-shirt pattern with a buttoned slit along the front. Men wear indigo pants and shirts made from specially dyed fabric called “mohom.”

In addition, there are still many kinds of
homespun fabric made in hill tribe villages.
They also make several kinds of fabric items
such as northern-style decorative flags,
blankets, and other household items.

“Nam lai”fabric design.

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