If you’re in Chiang Rai and after something to jazz up your wardrobe, made a beeline for Chezmoi, a snazzy little boutique that’s piled high with colourful clothes and accessories for guys and gals, all of them inspired by hilltribe costumes.
Chezmoi belongs to a designer Jittinart “Phai” Pichaiya and her friends, who are determined to introduce creative ethnic fashion to youngsters in the northern town. Jittinart and her pals quit her jobs in Bangkok in January and headed back home to launch their first collection of handmade earrings and necklaces on Chiang Rai’s walking street.
Two months ago, they moved into a shophouse, which serves as their boutique and also offers rooms under a homestay programme. It’s ideally located on the main shopping street – San Khong Noi Road – and stocks a wide selection of fashion outfits and handmade gear as well as some home decor items.
All products are made by villagers in Chiang Rai and feature the elaborate embroidery of the Yao and Akha, Lisu patchwork and Hmong weaves.
“We’re a handicraft store. Our products are based on ethnic fashion and our designs are inspired by unique costumes of hill tribes living in Chiang Rai province. The main materials are woven fabrics,” says Jittinart, an alumni of Chanapatana International Design Institute.
In the traditional merchandise corner, you’ll find attractive Karen-style shirts, dresses, hats and bags, refined silver jewellery and Tai Lue-style placemats and scarves. Other shelves are lined with vividly coloured pocket bags, handbags, scarves, backpacks, embroidered shirts, crochet hats, rings, earrings, bracelets, hairbands, hairpins, mobile straps, key rings, shoes, pillows and lamps.
Jittinart also creates a collection of trendy Egyptian-style outfits for women made from traditional fabric, along with some beautiful skirts imported from India and Nepal. Items range in price from Bt10 to Bt2,000.
Chezmoi is located at 34/2, San Khong Noi Road. It’s open daily from noon to 10pm. Call (080) 444 4579, (089) 747 5683 or visit www.ChezmoiMyHome.com