Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Reed Mats in Thailand

A beautiful handicraft found throughout most of Thailand is produced by skillfully plaiting reeds, strips of palm leaf, or some other easily available local plant. The supple mats made by this process of weaving without a loom are widely used in Thai homes, from the simplest to the most intricate. These mats are also now being made into shopping bags, place mats, and decorative wall hangings.
One popular kind of Thai mat is made from a kind of reed known as Kachud, which grows plentifully in the southern swamps. After the reeds are harvested, they are steeped in mud, which toughens them and prevents them from becoming brittle. They are then dried in the sun for a time and pounded flat, after which they are ready to be dyed and woven into mats of various sizes and patterns.
Other mats are produced in different parts of Thailand, most notably in the eastern province of Chanthaburi. Durable as well as attractive, they are plaited entirely by hand with an intricacy that makes the best resemble finely woven fabrics.


You can buy Reed Place Mats on ebay.

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