“Punk will not die, but our tradition will.” - A collection inspired by the death of Thai traditional textiles.

With this collection I want to bring awareness to the disappearance of Thai craftsmanship in my generation, as the demand of our textiles has dropped dramatically since the beginning of modernism and ‘fast fashion’ culture. This means that a traditional weaver cannot survive by just weaving, and our traditional complex knowledge will be lost after this generation of weavers have passed. The issues in our textiles industry is that the garments made are placed on a pedestal, you have to be of fit social class to wear it. As the base of tradition from the textiles comes from the Thai belief in Buddhism it finds itself still wrapped up in so many complex traditional and religious rules. As some our used as ceremonial gowns for religious ceremonies its hard to blur the lines between what is acceptable for some a rich man to wear, and a poor man to wear. The rules prevent these traditional textiles being made for purposes outside these boundaries; for example we cannot use the textiles to be cut below ankle length and it is prohibited to be worn in a manner which could be deemed ‘sexually inappropriate’. These are the issues at large which the current generation find it hard to relate to, and navigate around. The theme in this collection is to create my own country where all of my identities are mixed together and there are no boundaries. The country “Shangrila” is the country where Punk and Thai textile is the core of the tradition and within that tradition rules are free-form. This zero waste design collection was made with the late 80’s punk fashion fused with Thai traditional aspects such as the burnt hand weaving, silk dresses, safety pins from Thai textile waste, Mohawk hair style with Thai tradition accessories, the mask from ‘Pussy Riot’ punk group and the rip sweater knitted with Thai textile.

The design of the leather trouser in the collection is inspired by the picture of a man try to expose himself by showing his underwear on the street. This collection is the primary result of expanding the limited current cultural narrative to create our own tradition to give this new generation new ideas and foundations on how to live with our old traditions.

Words, garments and photography by Ms Shangrila , a designer currently studying at CSM. Models Fa and Fon.