Ref. Number: A512

Country: Thailand

Basket from Northern Thailand

Basket from Northern Thailand

Depending on the individual artist, the culture, and the baskets’ purpose, baskets may be plain and practical, woven of a single color and strip-width, or complex and decorative, woven with patterns of dyed strip colors, varying widths and materials, and unusual design lines. Pieces of wood are often woven onto the frame to lift the basket off the floor and create greater strength of form.

In Thailand, the women have a reputation as skilled weavers of cloth, while men and women alike produce the baskets. The men also craft crossbows, musical instruments and other items made of wood, bamboo and rattan and take pride in their skills in hunting and trapping. In the dry season, the men would often stay in the forests for several days for that purpose.

Basket from Northern Thailand

Basket from Northern Thailand

Once woven, many bamboo and rattan carrying baskets are hung on the homes’ rafters for up to a year where the daily hearth’s smoke seasons them. The smoke not only strengthens the rattan, granting it flexibility when dry, but also gives the baskets, once the accumulated creosote has been rubbed off, a warm and beautiful patina. The smoked baskets are considered to be of greater beauty and value.

Though they work equally on the farm, the wife will be left alone to do all the cooking and household chores aside from carrying the heavy basket on her back. This basket is usually full of firewood, vegetables and farming tools which she carries back and forth.

Basket from Northern Thailand

Basket from Northern Thailand

The Tribes villages are established with houses built on high stilts, with bamboo walls, wooden plank floors and grass-thatched roofs, leaving the ground level corral for their domestic animals like chickens, pigs and buffalos.

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