Suea-dam, Tam-phrae, Sin-mai: a Database of Local Wisdom

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Sombat Prajonsant


The people of Buriram are descended from four ethnic groups,: the Kuay, Khmer, Thai Khorat, and Lao. Each group has a distinctive weaving style. The objectives of this research are to create a database of local wisdom about popular weaving in the different lineages in Buriram and to study and record khit and matmii patterns for publication in various media. This project involved 195 persons and 96 patterns, and has registered their names, addresses, and designs.  The study found that the local wisdom persons were primarily aged 31-50. They studied the initial stage from their ancestors, when they were about 16-20 years old. They learned weaving and used the old equipment that had been passed along to them.  The weaving process was the same throughout Isan. It was found that materials were imported from outside the community and the quality of products was inconsistent due to lack of expertise about weighing, measurements, and records.  The Kuay group preferred to weave silk and their favorite colors were green, red, and a shade of brown like Tamarindus indica. The Thai Khmer had the greatest number of experts who knew how to use their ancestors’ designs. Their favorite colors were red, yellow, and green. The colors usually had few patterns. The Thai Khorat preferred to weave without patterns. Their favorite colors were red, marine (aquamarine?), black, and green.The Thai Lao preferred to weave matmii silk in large patterns using the design of their ancestors. They preferred red, yellow, white, and green. They often used light colors.  It is recommended that further research should promote educational exchange between local wise people, young people, and local educators. This is the strategy of conservation, heritage, and developing local silk weaving. This strategy might bring more products to the market by developing people’s skills, networks, products, and markets.


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Prajonsant, S. (1). Suea-dam, Tam-phrae, Sin-mai: a Database of Local Wisdom. Journal of Mekong Societies, 2(2), 125-138. Retrieved from