The sharper edge to traveling in Asia

Lacquerware in Chiang Mai, Thailand

Written By: herbrunbridge - Jun• 08•10

Exacting handwork at Praturng Lacquerware

There are still a few lacquerware shops operating in and around the Chiang Mai area.  Chiang Mai lacquerware was designed to provide a waterproof finish to bowls, trays, and cabinets, utilizing lacquer produced from a tree found in Burma and northern Thailand.  Today, lacquer, which is officially banned in Thailand due to its toxicity, is acquired through underground Burmese connections. 

Typically, the process begins with the original bamboo object, and three successive layers of lacquer-clay slip are applied to form a base.  Gold leaf is applied over an etched design, washed to remove excess gold (which is collected for further use), and 8 more layers are applied, with varying amounts of additional etching and color. 

Several lacquerware shops operate in the Chiang Mai area, with varying degrees of quality.  We especially enjoyed Ban-Khern on Chiangmai-Sankamphaeng Road for its outstanding quality, and Praturng Lacquerware, on Nantarum Road in the Old City,for its charm.

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One Comment

  1. says:

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