Sunday, May 30, 2010

Tribal Headdresses from Thailand

I purchased my first two Thai Hill Tribe headdresses at Flypaper, a gift shop in Anchorage, Alaska.

Later in 2002, when I visited Thailand on a wonderful SmarTours tour, I purchased a few more hats, mostly in or near Chiang Rai.  The first three hats are children's hats. 

The last three are adult headdresses.

By the way, the SmarTours tour was fabulous!  It was very reasonably priced, our tour guides were knowledgeable and wonderful, the people were friendly and welcoming, the food was great, and the crafts were amazing.  The tour was not billed as a craft tour, but craft is so deeply embedded in the Thai culture, it's unavoidable.  We visited a papermaking village, silk weavers, an umbrella factory, woodcarvers, bronze casters, silversmiths, utensil makers, gem stone sellers, orchid growers, a rice processing plant, a factory making lacquer boxes, weavers, elephant trainers, custom tailors, and a cloisonné factory.  In addition we saw museums and temples, markets, and wonderful scenery.  We rode elephants through the jungle!  The current political situation there is unfortunate, and I don't know how that's affecting the tour business.  The tour we took couldn't have been better.  I'm hoping to repeat it some day. 

October 2012 Update
I received a comment and a link to a very interesting blog post.  This post explains the significance of the different headdress designs.  Take a look.  Click here.

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