Bangkok is a shopper's heaven if you know where to go. I still remember some good retail and wholesale outlets since I lived in Bangkok over 30 years ago. Of course there are new shopping malls popping up every time I go back. The area I know well is Sampeng Lane in China Town. Every time I visit Bangkok I go there. I don't really know how to get there, but every taxi knows where to take you. It was comforting because when you are ready to leave you can jump on a taxi and get out of there. Because DDIL was with me on this trip I thought I would let her experience Sampeng Lane with me. Sampeng Lane market is very large. I found some YouTube videos here and here in case you are interested to see the place. Sampeng Lane is as interesting now as it was 30 years earlier. You can stroll along looking at everything and anything; there is no pressure for you to buy. You would feel the heat at this time of year, but you can make stops at well air-conditioned shops along the way. You can also get refreshment from the many vendors pushing their carts along every few minutes. Please come along to a mini tour of Sampeng Lane in Bangkok with me...
There are drawbacks to shopping in Bangkok, especially in Sampeng Lane. There is so much choice that it is difficult to pick something to buy. You tend to postpone making decisions so that you can think about it before you buy, but the trouble is, later when you decide, you can never find what you saw before! It happened to us many times. You can see in the above photo of handbags that the choice is amazing. And no, we did not buy one!
You see what I mean about too many choices! I love these string of beads. I only want just one string, but which one do I choose? I came away with half a dozen of them, I think!
I think these are amazonite stone. They come in all shapes and sizes. I thought these were interesting but they must he heavy to wear around your neck!!! I really wanted to bring one home, but I would have had a problem with the weight.
These hand held mini sewing machines actually work. I thought afterward that it would work well with small pieces on the go. Sadly I didn't get one because I'm trying to downsize not to collect more...!
The lady showed us how this little machine works. You can also use it as a bobbin winder. I should have got one now, dang!!!
One fifth of Thai community are Chinese from mainland China. They moved south during the famine years. My Grandfather was also from China so I'm quarter Chinese. What would my children be then? Too complicated! Why did I talk about Chinese? Oh, I just wanted to say that the Chinese also brought in the tradition of tea drinking to Thailand. Thais generally drink coffee, the traditional antique-style coffee. I will tell you about that later. Above are the many wonderful tea cups and also tea pots you can get at Sampeng Lane market. I did bring the selection of these home with me.
Out of all those wonderful choices here is my little pile of purchases. Though I did get them in multiple items. They are great for gifts. Inside the woven tote bag is 3 meters of indigo dyed fabric from North-eastern Thailand. Those little strawberry shaped felted purses and some with folk designs on them are so adorable. The blue cords made from recycled paper and the roll of antique trim with cross stitched design is a treasure and some leather broaches. The woven tote bag gives me fond memories every time I use it. I got it from an elderly lady sitting at the bottom of the steps at a Skytrain station. She had many of them for sale, but I chose this one with red stripes on it. I'm glad I got it when I did because on our way back she was no longer there!
DDIL and her treasured leather hand bag. We walked far and wide in search of the bag she was looking for. Once we found them, there was so many to choose from. After many "yes no, yes no" later she found the one she liked. The brown woven leather handbag to die for...
I spent too much time in Bangkok among the glitzy and glamourous. I bought myself a new iPhone case cover with Swarovsky diamond studs. It's unlike me to carry a phone full of diamonds, but I thought it is now or never!!!
Here are more like it. I also bought some plain covers. Couldn't decide which one I like better so I bought all five of them! At the moment I'm using the Maneki-neko (lucky cat) cover and I am just thrilled with it.
We were hot and tired by 1:00pm. It was time to get out of there. When we arrived at the end of one section of the market we stopped for a drink and we were ready to go back to our hotel. We tried to hail down some taxis, but none of them would take us where we wanted to go because the traffic was so heavy. Mid afternoon is also the time when taxis change shifts. After half a dozen or so one stopped and he must have felt sorry for us sweating away in the heat. He offered to take us to the nearest Skytrain so we could return to our hotel. That was a fun and adventurous shopping trip we had in Bangkok!
If any of you happen to venture to South-east Asia, I highly recommend Bangkok as a stopover. Drop me an email if you need any travel tips to Bangkok.
See you again soon.