If you’ve ever been to Thailand and walked through the markets, you’ll probably notice hand made items like harem pants, statues, wood carvings, earrings, and bags. Today, we introduce to you the Thai handpainted umbrella.
Thai Handpainted Umbrellas - Bo Sang Village
These umbrellas are mostly made in Chiang Mai in the Bo Sang region. This is a regional handicraft village, also known for its fishing lake where you can catch large mekong catfish.
The umbrella village is the heart and soul of Bo Sang and every year there is even a Bo sang festival where a Miss Bo Sang is crowned. Needless to say, there are always plenty of Thai paper umbrellas at the festival.
If you ever visit Chiang Mai and the Bo Sang Village, it is quite easy to find the umbrella makers. They are literally everywhere. Each baan or house will take you in and let you watch the artisans at work. If you have the patience to stay long enough, you can see the entire assembly line, which is a work of art.
We can promise you none of these items come preassembled and machine made. The heads, stem, and ribs used to support the umbrella are hand carved from bamboo wood, making each Thai umbrella slightly different and unique.
As for the umbrella material itself, it is made of Sa Paper, which comes from mulberry tree bark. They can also be made from silk fabric. It comes on white at first and then it is completely hand painted by the artisan at work. Of course, there are some standard designs that involve flowers and bright colors.
As you can see, the design are just incredibly detailed and each one is unique. Next time you are in Chiang Mai, Thailand be sure to visit the Bo Sang Umbrella Village for a tour and to pick up some umbrellas as souvenirs.
Or if you are lazy, you can pick them up online here.