BENJARONG
THE ESSENCE OF SILK AND NATURAL FIBERS

Photos by Hans Fonk

With the 2009 Benjarong Collection, Jim Thompson revives centuries-old traditions to reinvent the elegance of Thai silk and natural fibres in creative new ways. The ethos of this collection is the ability to mix the past and present, traditional and modern, old and new to establish a look and feel which transcends time and place to serve a multitude of design and decorative ideas.

The word Benjarong (meaning five-colour) comes from the name given to ornate, uniquely patterned antique export porcelain originally made exclusively for the Siamese royalty. Centuries ago, Benjarong wares were produced in China but decorated with colourful Thai designs which found their inspiration from Indian and Persian motifs. Already then, Siam lay at a cultural crossroads of Asia and this influence was richly reflected in the opulent style of Siamese art. Still today as exhibited in the exciting Benjarong Collection, the result of this multifaceted mixture of oriental and eastern traditions continues to inspire Jim Thompson in daring new ways. The hand-woven fabrics in this collection stand out because of their unique characteristics. The silk cultivated in Thailand, which is more textured and less uniform, adds a special quality and dimension to the fabric, whether the choice is ikat, print or plain.

   
BENJARONG 3356/01-06
100%Silk
6 colourways
Handwoven

Every collection must have a star and Benjarong is the masterpiece of this one. To create this luxurious, handwoven silk, our designers revisited the famous Jim Thompson House on the klong. Inspired by the beautiful multi-coloured Benjarong porcelain in the collection and original silk patterns found on early Jim Thompson silks, we developed six colourways ranging from vibrant oranges to earth tones. Drapes or cushions in this fabric will add a signature note to any decorative theme.
   

ANNAM 127000A/01-06
100%Silk
6 colourways
Handwoven

Just as the sunlight plays on the shades and tones of everything found under the oriental sun, so too do our Annam silks vibrate with the colours of earth. The wonderful texture of this two-ply silk that serves as the ground cloth to Benjarong comes in a distinctive palate of six colours that coordinate with Benjarong and are ideal to suit a wide variety of décor needs.

   

BURNISHED REEDS 3353/01-20
75%Silk – 12%Polyester – 13%Cotton
20 colourways
Handwoven

Bold texture created by contrasting stripes of raised, turned threads give this classic Jim Thompson pattern its distinctive character. A selection of twenty colourways offers an almost infinite choice of decorative options for this fabric. This classic look is synonymous with the famous Jim Thompson tradition and quality. With fabrics such as Burnished Reeds, our textiles stand out in a class of their own. Burnished Reeds is now available in a silk blend for increased durability.

   

SIAMESE BOX 3352/01-17
70%Silk – 30%Polyester
17 colourways
Handwoven

This signature fabric of Jim Thompson has been revived in plentiful colours that suit today’s décor. The ever popular three-coloured ribbed check comes in a new choice of 17 colourways. Contrasting and blending colours in ribs and checks has repeatedly been a winning formula for Jim Thompson over the years. Our new Siamese Box retains the look of pure silk, but provides the increased durability with its silk blend.

   

ILLUSION 1021/03,04,06 to 13
100%Silk
10 colourways
Handwoven

The large ikat pattern formed by meticulous hand-dyeing and hand-tying silk threads gives this fabric its illusive quality. It is as if sunlight and shadows are continuously playing on this luxurious fabric. However, there is no illusion to the appeal of this magnificent six-ply silk ikat – day or night, indoor lighting, natural lighting, even moonlight – this outstanding fabric has a special character created by hand-weaving natural, textured Thai silk threads into this luxurious cloth. A decorator’s palette of ten colours makes all sorts of captivating illusions possible.

   

CANDY STRIPE 3351/01-06
100%Silk
6 colourways
Handwoven

How decadent! There are everyday candy stripes and then there is Jim Thompson Candy Stripe, a luxurious taffeta two-ply Thai silk that dares to be fun and playful. With six different colourways ranging from blends of hot pinks to more subtle shades of grays and greens this surprising fabric will add a special touch of luxury to any atmosphere and complement a variety of prints.

   

HELICONIA 3354/01-12
25%Silk – 75%Polyester
12 colourways
Martindale 30,000 rubs
Handwoven

This exciting hand-woven fabric is a delight to the eye and a surprise to the touch. While Heliconia boasts softness with its chenille-like texture, it also assures strength and endurance. This sturdy silk-polyester-cotton blend, although handwoven, has a surprisingly high rub test making it ideal for upholstery. The 12 colourways are interrupted with a Heliconia shaped pattern in contrasting shades. The whole effect is delightfully attractive, yet the subtle pattern is neutral enough to compliment a wide range of creative needs.

   

HIGHLANDS 3355/01-03
100%Silk
3 colourways
Handwoven

Highlands, a warp print of flora, expands the Jim Thompson repertoire of sophisticated silk to the unexpected. This luxurious fabric is pure art created on a canvas of exquisite Thai silk. The subtle hues and design of this amazing textile which comes in three colourways will captivate your imagination and draw you into an opulent world of dreams.

   

TAPIOCA 3312/01-06
100%Silk
6 colourways
Handwoven

This two-ply warp print is a decorator’s dream. Tapioca is a modern, painterly pattern that has a wonderful texture and a versatility that makes it easy to use in all sorts of surroundings. This two-ply weight is ideal for drapery.

   
STARLIGHT 3311/01-04
100%Silk
5 colourways
Handwoven

Inspired by the marbled patterns of traditional Chinese scholar’s dream-stones (Pierre de Rêve), this elegant silk warp print is all about poetry. Chinese artists would use their imagination to see clouds and mountains in the natural patterns of the polished stones that they kept in their studios. With its neutral, contemporary design, Starlight is inspired by the ethereal dream-world of these poets. The contemporary choice of contrasting colours will make this fabric a visionary dream in any setting.

TINNART NISALAK
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