Enchanting Threads of Thai Cultural Masterpiece Woven with Majesty

In the realm of threads, where the essence of creativity weaves, emerges the enigma of the Li Pao woven.

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This exquisite craft embodies the ancestral artistry of the Southern domain, a heritage whispered through generations since the Ayutthaya Kingdom. The Li Pao weave, a tapestry etched into urban lore, unfurls its eminence when the Southern Lord presents his homage to the imperial court. This tradition, kindled in the heart of the southern capital, found wings in the dynasty of Rattanakosin. Its journey began in Nakhon Si Thammarat, enchanting and captivating, as it found its way to the heart of Bangkok, flourishing during the second reign and soaring to unprecedented popularity in the era of King Rama V, a time of regal elegance.


“Yan Li Pao” or “Li Pao”, derived from the local dialect of the Southern region, referring to the flexible vine known as “Yan”. Resembling rattan, this plant is durable, resilient, and boasts an enduring lifespan. In the days of yore, Yan Li Pao transformed into vessels and instruments of every life, including the betel set, intricately patterned baskets, fans, handheld pouches, container box for tobacco, and even teapots. The art of crafting Yan Li Pao transcends skill, becoming a whispered masterpiece among the Southern folks, with its epicenter of prominence nestled within Nakhon Si Thammarat, renowned as the paramount haven of this craft. It is, indeed, considered the very cradle of authentic Yan Li Pao weaving, an embodiment of Southern heritage.


The process of crafting intricate woven pieces requires an abundance of diligence, delicate precision, and enduring patience. It commences with the delicerate interlacing of threads, akin to the process called the art of “Chak Liead” (ชักเลียด), until an equidistant warp is achieved and its surface becomes a canvas of smooth elegance. Then, it is meticulously woven by hand, thread after thread, bestowing upon the creation from this warp realm an aura of artistry spun with the patterns of weaving. The artisans often embellish these works with elements decorated in silver and gilded gold, further augmenting their value and magnificence.


Some Yan Li Pao handbags might be adorned with a spectrum of colored fabrics and embellished with mirrors inside, exuding a captivating allure as a remarkable treasure of cultural artistry, resonating with the splendor of a noble heritage. Those fortunate enough to possess a handcrafted woven masterpiece, steeped in such a long lineage of tradition, are bearers of a glorious legacy. This heritage of Thai artistic craftsmanship is an invaluable heirloom, ensuring that the beauty of the past continues to gracefully transcended into the hands of other generations to come, never to fade away unnoticed.


Lot 111 Session 1
A Yan Li Pao handbag (1 pc.)
Style: Thai, Rattanakosin
Dimensions: W 12.5 cm L 21 cm H 8.5 cm
Circa: 20th Century
Estimated Price: 8,000 - 10,000 THB
Starting Price: 2,000 THB