Karen Woven Bag - Sand & Blue (Thailand)

Karen Woven Bag - Sand & Blue (Thailand)

  • From The Chiang Mai Collection.
  • 100% handmade by Waralee in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
  • Made from a repurposed, traditional handwoven and embroidered Karen Hill Tribe cotton top with all the pom(p) and circumstance: Job’s tears seed embellishments, antique French Indochina coins (some replicas, some real), pom poms, leather strap and tassels with wooden beads.  
  • Zip closure with cotton lining and interior zip pocket. 

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Lush, free spirit decadence. I was captivated by these bags the first time I laid eyes on them in a sweltering, rather obscure market. I went back numerous times to visit their maker and really took my picking out each of the four bags you see here (and one for myself!). Each time I visited I inevitably ended up picking out her most recent design.  

These bags are exquisite gems. The fabric you see is actually constructed from a handwoven (on a backstrap loom) and embroidered Karen shirt, which Waralee then repurposes into bags, adding her own tassel embellishments and sturdy leather strap with wooden beads. Waralee likes to use vintage fabric, so some of the bags are from vintage shirts while others are new weavings. Each bag is completely unique.

About the Karen tribe: The majority of the Karen people live in Myanmar (Burma), but they also represent the largest of the six major hill tribes of Northern Thailand. Karen women are noted for their backstrap loom weaving and embroidery using Job’s tears.