loader image

How to wear Thai Traditional Costume ?



How to wear Thai Traditional Costume ?

          Thai Bangkok Modern Costume came with a variety of colors, patterns and styles. As each of them possessed a unique beauty and details, choosing which style of cloths suits you best, could be a really tough decision. Wearing traditional costume is not something you get to do every day, knowing some tips about how to find your best Thai traditional costume that would fit not just your appearance, but reflect your personality and who you are? That would make your traditional costume experience more personal and memorable than ever!

          This article would bring you easy tips about choosing the Thai costume of your choice and how to wear it nice and right. Let’s find out what is your styles and learn all about Thai cultures along the way. Buckle up, we are going to get to know Thai traditional costume from the scratch!

Find your Shawls

Shawls are one of the most distinguish pieces in Thai traditional costume. They came in different colors and textures, from plain shawl, pleat shawl, printed shawl, shawl with sequin and ‘Pha Sapak’. Each types of shawls are worn in different occasion.

         Plain Shawl

This type of shawls is usually worn as the inner layer of the shawl, coupling to the outer shawls with matching palette.

          Pleat Shawl

Pleat shawl can be worn as both the inner and out shawls. There are variety of styles to be created with this type of shawls, such as, double pleat shawls, couple the pleat shawls with the pattern shawls and et cetera.

          Pattern Shawl

Pattern Shawl in Thai traditional costume are available in both textures, either plain/smooth shawls or pleat shawls. There are variety of patterns and prints which can be classed as follows
  • Traditional Thai Pattern – an orthodox pattern which has been passed through generations since Ayutthaya Dynasty. The shawls were originally designed by Thai weaver and passed on for Indian artist for pattern printing. The well-known patterns are the floral prints, scenery and characters from traditional mythical tales, bringing the timeless beauty of traditional myths into life.
  • Contemporary Prints/Pattern – applying contemporary and modern traceries as patterns of the textile. This type of prints radiates the casualness and comfort, matches well with day-to-day, casual clothing. It can also be coupled up with other types of shawls to bring the sophisticated and contemporary looks to your Thai traditional costume.
  • Sequined Shawl – is the shawl embroiled with sequin, crystals or golden braid, exquisitely weaving into the fabric. It is usually worn over the Chinese-style shawl. Sequined shawl is known for its majestic looks.
  • Sapak Fabric – This specific type of cloth was worn as the outer layer shawls, it was very popular among Thai noble ladies when attending special events. They usually worn the Sapak Fabric with a cooler contrast to the bottom fabric. The pattern and embodiment of the fabric would reflect the aristocratic status and wealth of those who wear them. It is the same fabric used in Thai-Jakkapattra (Imperial Thai Costume), which is the costume worn in royal rite.

Find your Colors

The methodologies of matching the colors of the shawls and the bottom clothes are plenty. Traditionally, people used to base their color of choices on propitious basis – based on Thai horoscopic sutra. While in modern days, the choices of colors are open for more flexibility and mixed with mainstream contemporary fashion. Looks are created based on personal preference than it used to in the early days. Some loved to use a similar palette of colors in a costume, such as, cool tone – with purple, blue, violet-blue and indigo, warm color tone – with yellow, orange, red, old-rose. Some preferred using one color in gradation, cascaded from lighter to darker tone.Once you have chosen the palette of your costume, the next step is to wear the shawls. There are 3 ways to wear Thai costume depends on styles of Thai traditional attire. There are Modern Chakri, Thai-Jakkapattra, and Early Rattanakosin. 

Please find below the step-by-step of  ‘How to wear Thai Traditional Costume’ from these videos we proudly present.

| How to wear the Modern Chakri costume |

      The Modern Chakri is one of those that was very popular among the Royals. Came up through the perfect convergence between traditional Thai attiring and the modern fashion. The dress was inspired by the Chakri Maha Prasat Throne Hall, the seat of the King and the Royals in the past.  It has been worn by the Thai for a special occasion, i.e., wedding ceremony. It is also known as traditional Thai wedding gowns.

| How to wear the Thai-Jakkapattra costume |

   The Thai Dynasty attire, is renowned as one of the most astonishing traditional Thai clothing. It is very popular among Thai women, as the cloth used in this attire is supplemented with delicately weaved embroidery. The garments consisted of double-layered shawl, the outer layer is embroiled with silver and golden braids along with the gems, which makes ‘Thai Dynasty’ attire, a very exquisitely meticulous cloth, as it is one of the royal attires. 

| How to wear the Early Rattanakosin costume |

      The Early Rattanokosin attire is the continuing legacy from the late Ayutthaya era. However, there was a dramatic change in the style of clothing in 1851, when Siamese culture was heavily influenced by the west. The costume gave the look of Chinese-style shawl and Thai long loincloth, and sometimes match with the straight cut shirt as well. The garment converges the Thai attire with some element from Chinese – Malay and Western attire. It is daunting, modern and dexterous all in one. No wonder why the attire was very popular among the female royals. 

Wearing the shawls

Typically, in Thai costume, the shawl is worn askew to the left, over the left shoulder. 
  1. Put on the inner strapless, make sure it is comfortable, not too fit or too loose.
  2. grasp the end of the inner shawl, put it over the center of your chest, clasp the hem of the shawl to the strapless together using pin(s).
  3. Wrap the shawl over the body and set it down over the left shoulder, askew to the left, then pin the shawl down to the back of the strapless to keep it together.
  4. Lay the outer shawl over the inner one and clasp it on the inner fabric for Thai-Jakkapattra you have to put the shawl near the nerval position.
  5. Using the pin to clasp down both outer and inner shawls around the shoulder to ward off the shawls from falling down.

Wearing the bottom fabric

The bottom fabric or Sinhs are now available in a ready-to-wear long skirt which helps lessen the process of wearing to be much faster and easier. Make sure you have arranged the layer of fabric perfectly before fasten the fabric with belt.However, if you choose to wear the authentic fabric, here is the how;
  1. Wrap the fabric around the waist, keep both ends of the fabric even.
  2. Lift the fabric around the waist up to make a tight bow, the pin could also be used to tighten the tie.
  3. Hold both ends of the fabric up in parallel. Hold one end up and fold it down (in a size of the palm) repeatedly until you reach the other end of the fabric, then reach the knot and pass it through the hem of cloth, arrange the fabric to make a fine cleaves.
  4. Lift up the other end of the cloth and fold it down the same way, when reached the end, passed it through to the waistline of the fabric, creating the layer of fabric.
  5. Fasten the fabric with the belt, arrange the layer of fabric and the hem of the cloth evenly.

Wearing the Loincloth

In case you are wearing the ready-to-wear loincloth, make sure to arrange the hem of the cloth evenly on both sides. Once complete, fasten the cloth with a belt.

How to self-styling the Loincloth

  1. Wrap the fabric around the waist, keep both ends of the fabric even.
  2. Lift the fabric around the waist up to make a tight bow, the pin could also be used to tighten the tie.
  3. Hold both ends of the fabric up in parallel. Hold one end up and fold it down (in a size of the palm) repeatedly until you reach the other end of the fabric.
  4. Flick the folded hem of the cloth to the back and tug it in the back of the waist.
  5. Fasten the loincloth with ropes, to make sure it will not fall down.
  6. Fasten the belt over the inner rope to finish the looks.

You can find out Thai traditional costume for rental by checking our site and let Thai Style Studio be a good part of your memories in Thailand.

Thai Style Studio 1984 How to wear Thai Traditional Costume ? 1

Photo by Thai Style Studio 1984

Author: Thipwimon Boonmee


>>ติดตามเรื่องราวความเป็นไทยอย่างใกล้ชิดที่ Thai Style Studio<<

เพราะเราเชื่อว่า “มากกว่าความรู้สึก คือ การได้สัมผัสประสบการณ์ความเป็นไทยด้วยตัวคุณเอง”


Share this post