The Hmong are an Asian ethnic group from the mountainous regions of China, Vietnam, Laos and Thailand. Originally from southern China, the Hmong gradually migrated south during the 18th century due to political unrest and to find more workable land. Today, many Hmong are located in the remote thick forests of Northern Thailand, living in communities that rely on agriculture and other Hmong trades, including textile manufacturing. The Hmong are rich in culture, family, and art, and are distinctive in their imaginative textile patterns and vibrant traditional style.
Hand-Embroidered Vintage Fabric:
These are what inspired the formation of Ethnic Lanna. Combining skills learned from the age of 5, Hill Tribe people use cross-stitch embroidery, weaving, indigo dying, hemp production, and batik to turn these textiles into works of art.
These fabrics are traditionally used to make Hmong Baby-Carriers. Expectant mothers meticulously hand embroider the carrier throughout their pregnancy, and will often hold onto them for years after they are used. The amount of love, care, and thought that goes into each step in the process is what makes these fabrics awesome and difficult to source. While a bit more expensive than every other available fabric, these have the most history and culture, making them well worth the added investment.
Hand-Embroidered Applique Fabric:
These fabrics are made of a combination of Hemp, Cotton, and Corduroy. The term applique is borrowed from French, and means applied. Applique's are surface patterns that are used to decorate portions of a fabric. Many patterns are based on elephant footprints or traditional floral and bird patterns. The way of life and the natural environment of the Hill Tribes is being told by these patterns, and having the ability to preserve them through fashion is something we cherish.
Some of our most popular and vibrant products are made with Batik fabric, an ancient textile that has been used throughout Asia since the 4th Century. The technique involves using a copper mold that is dipped in warm melted wax and stamped onto cotton. The fabric is then naturally dyed. When the fabric has dried, the wax, which has been unaffected by the dye, is removed with boiling water or scraped from the cloth, bringing the intricate creative patterns to life.
The Karen are an ethnic group from Southern Burma. Large numbers of Karen people have migrated to Thailand due to being largely unrecognized as citizens of Burma since the country gained independence from Britain over half a century ago. The Karen communities that exist in Northern Thailand today, have managed to build a micro-economy by selling gorgeously handcrafted goods that represent their culture’s fashion. Working with them allows us to help boost their efforts to rebuild after having to migrate.
We source vintage Kaftan Style shirts that are a staple in the Karen wardrobe. These vibrant shirts are made from colorful fabrics that have been hand-stitched with traditional designs. The tribal look of these kaftans transitions perfectly into a bohemian wardrobe, and is incredibly comfortable.
The Lisu are a group with Tibetan origins that are located in Burma, Southwest China, Thailand and India. Their rich cultural history has been largely passed down through the use of music, which means art is a revered aspect of their heritage. In Thailand they are well-known for their tribal dress, and have been referred to as the Flowery Lisu. Having them as partners allows us to play a role in preserving a part of their diligently preserved culture.
Handmade Striped Cotton Fabric:
The hand-embroidered textiles we source from Lisu have distinct look. They are colorful and have intricate geometric shape-like designs. These gorgeous patterns have a timeless tribal style that transforms beautifully into some of the handbags we make.