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Posts tagged “artisan

Chiang Mai Artisans: The Art of Thai Silk

Thai silk worms, caterpillars rather than worms, munch on mounds of mulberry leaves before using their spittle to form cocoons. Weavers soak these cocoons in boiling water to extract the silk thread from the cocooned caterpillar then hand reel the raw silk on wooden spindles.

After dyeing, they weave blends of colorful threads on traditional hand-looms making exquisite Thai silk cloth.

This post is the last in my series about artisans of Chiang Mai in northern Thailand. I took these images in a Thai silk making and weaving workshop documenting some of the stages from silk worm cocoons to finished product.

For background on the origins and process of Thai silk making check out Wikipedia’s Thai Silk article. Also, the rest of my Chiang Mai artisan series: The Art of Making Traditional Thai ParasolsThe Art of Wood Carving and The Art of Thai Lacquerware.

Finished Thai silk products in the store, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Finished Thai silk products in the store

Thai silk worms, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Thai silk worms

Close-up of Thai silk worms eating mulberry leaves, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Close-up of Thai silk worms eating mulberry leaves

Thai silk worm cocoons, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Thai silk worm cocoons

Thai silk worm and cocoons, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Thai silk worm and cocoons

Thai silk worm cocoons, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Thai silk worm cocoons

Weaving Thai silk on a hand-loom, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk on a hand-loom

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Dyed silk threads, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Dyed silk threads

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Gorgeous golden threads of Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Gorgeous golden threads of Thai silk

Spindles of dyed Thai silk threads, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Spindles of dyed Thai silk threads

Bleached raw Thai silk threads before dyeing, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Bleached raw Thai silk threads before dyeing

Dyed Thai silk fabric drying, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Dyed Thai silk fabric drying

Dyeing Thai silk fabric, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Dyeing Thai silk fabric

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Weaving Thai silk, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Weaving Thai silk

Spindles of Thai silk thread seen through threads on loom, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Spindles of Thai silk thread seen through threads on loom

Close-up of spindles of Thai silk thread seen through threads on loom, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Close-up of spindles of Thai silk thread seen through threads on loom

Spindles of Thai silk thread, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Spindles of Thai silk thread


Chiang Mai Artisans: The Art of Thai Lacquerware

Continuing on from my series of artisan posts from the highland city of Chiang Mai in northern Thailand, this series of photos shows skilled artisans and their craft during various stages of the Thai lacquerware process.

Elephants, pots, boxes, trays, vases and plates, all different shapes and sizes, are just some of the lacquered handicrafts created. Engraved patterns gilded with gold leaf, broken eggshell inlays or delicate hand painted designs adorn them.

Check out the article Northern Thai Lacquerware for more information on the materials, methods and history of this exquisite art form. Also, my other Chiang Mai artisan posts The Art of Making Traditional Thai Parasols and The Art of Wood Carving.

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Pots before applying lacquer

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Lacquered pots

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Polishing lacquered items

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Polishing stars after applying gold leaf

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Elephants and pots decorated with gold leaf

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Applying gold leaf to an elephant

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Applying gold leaf to an elephant close-up

Gold leaf inlaid lacquered Jewelry box, Thai lacquerware, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Gold leaf inlaid lacquered Jewelry box

Lacquered tray, Thai lacquerware, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted lacquered tray with eggshell inlay

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting pots by hand

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting pots by hand

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Applying eggshell to pots

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting by hand

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting by hand close-up

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting by hand close-up

Lacquerware workshop, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painting designs on an elephant

Lacquered elephant, Thai Lacquerware showroom, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Large painted lacquered elephant in showroom

Lacquered urn, Thai Lacquerware showroom, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Large lacquered urn in showroom

 


Chiang Mai Artisans: The Art of Wood Carving

In the highland city of Chiang Mai in northern Thailand, I recently photographed various artisans at work.

Here’s a series of my images taken in a furniture workshop. Skillful wood carvers chisel intricate relief scenes from blocks of teak to create screens, sculptures and elaborate chairs while other artisans inlay delicate mother-of pearl designs decorating rosewood tabletops and cabinets.

Check out my previous post Chiang Mai Artisans: The Art of Making Traditional Thai Parasols.

Carving a rural Thai scene in teak, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carving a rural Thai scene in teak

Wood carver's toolbox, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Wood carver’s toolbox

Carving flowers in teak, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carving flowers in teak

Wood carver's tools, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Wood carver’s tools

Carving in teak, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carving in teak

Carving in teak, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carving in teak

Carving in teak, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carving in teak

Inserting mother-of-pearl inlay in rosewood, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Inserting mother-of-pearl inlay in rosewood

Inserting mother-of-pearl inlay in rosewood, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Inserting mother-of-pearl inlay in rosewood

Cutting mother-of-pearl for inlay, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Cutting mother-of-pearl designs for inlay

Carved wooden elephants on the back of a chair, wood carving, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Carved wooden elephants on the back of a chair

Beautiful, twisted tree trunk with wood carving scene behind, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Beautiful, twisted tree trunk with wood carving scene behind


Chiang Mai Artisans: The Art of Making Traditional Thai Parasols

During my recent trip to Chiang Mai in the northern highlands of Thailand, I visited handicraft workshops to watch artisans making traditional Thai parasols, silk, wood carvings and lacquered pots, boxes and ornaments.

This series of photos shows the parasol workshop and its artisans.

Painted and unpainted parasols, Thai parasol workshop, Traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted and unpainted parasols in the parasol workshop

Painted and unpainted parasols, Thai parasol workshop, Traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Close-up of painted and unpainted parasols

Painted and unpainted parasols, Thai parasol workshop, Traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Bundles of unpainted parasols alongside finished, painted ones

Artisans in Thai parasol workshop, Traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Artisans in Thai parasol workshop

Frames of drying sa paper made from mulberry tree bark, Traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Frames of drying sa paper made from mulberry tree bark

Frames of sa paper made from mulberry tree bark drying in the sun, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Frames of sa paper, made from mulberry tree bark, drying in the sun

Cutting bamboo spokes for parasol frames, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Cutting bamboo spokes for parasol frames

Bamboo parasol frames, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Bamboo parasol frames

Close-up of bundles of bamboo parasol frames, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Close-up of bundles of bamboo parasol frames

Bundles of bamboo parasol frames, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Bundles of bamboo parasol frames

Fixing bamboo spokes to make parasol frames, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Fixing bamboo spokes to make parasol frames

Cutting sa paper to size around a parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Cutting sa paper to size around a parasol frame

Glueing pieces of sa paper to parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Glueing pieces of sa paper to parasol frame

Close-up of glueing sa paper to parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Close-up of glueing sa paper to parasol frame

Glueing sa paper to parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Glueing sa paper to parasol frame

Glueing layers of sa paper to parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Glueing layers of sa paper to parasol frame

Parasols in different stages of production, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Parasols in different stages of production

Glueing sa paper to parasol frame, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Glueing sa paper to parasol frame

Glued sa paper drying in the sun, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Glued sa paper drying in the sun

Fixing bamboo spokes on parasol, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Fixing bamboo spokes on parasol

Finishing touches to parasol, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Finishing touches to parasol

Painted parasols, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted parasols

Parasol workshop, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Parasol workshop

Artisans at work in parasol workshop, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Artisans at work

Parasol paraphernalia, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Parasol paraphernalia

Painted parasols, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted parasols

Painted parasols and artisans at work, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted parasols and artisans at work

Painted parasols, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Painted parasols

Painted parasols, traditional Thai parasols, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Gorgeous painted parasols