Crafting Small Jars from Banana Leaves

A step-by-step guide to crafting jars using banana leaf

By The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Small Container Jars – Thai Wisdom Innovation (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Small Container Jars – Thai Wisdom Innovation

Banana-leaf container jars are Thai wisdom innovation imitating chinaware by folding, weaving and sewing banana leaves together to make delicate food and dessert containers.

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 1 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 1

1. Make a 1-inch wide and 15-cm. long rectangle piece of banana leaf. Folding one end to the other making a right angle.

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 2 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 2

2. Fold both ends of the leaf together then turn the edge of the fold to the left and fold the back of the leaf upward.

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 3 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Folding and Sewing the Container Jar 3

3. Using a green thread, sew 53 pieces together, leaving 0.5 cm. space between pieces. 

Forming the Container Jar Body with Banana Leaves (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Forming the Container Jar Body with Banana Leaves

4. Roll the sewn piece tightly and make a circle. Make another piece like so to make both the body and the lid of the container jar.

Sewing the Base of the Container Jar (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Sewing the Base of the Container Jar

5. Make a circular piece with 3-inch diameter. Then, sew the piece to the inside base of the container jar. Make another piece with 1.5-inch diameter and sew it to the outer base of the container jar body.

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 1 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 1

6. Make an outer base of the container jar body by ripping the coconut leaf into 1-cm.-wide stripe. Use the needle and cut the right end of the stripe making a vertical incision of 1-cm. width. 

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 2 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 2

7. Put the left end of the stripe in the incision prepared in the previous procedure to make a sharp cone.

Weaving the Outer Base of the Casket 3 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 3

8. Use the needle and cut the right end of the stripe making a vertical incision of 1-cm. width then turn the stripe around and put through the prepared incision. 

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 4 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving the Outer Base of the Container Jar 4

9. Continue weaving the stripe until it is 6-inch long then sew this to the base of the container jar.

Sewing the Top-end of the Lid (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Sewing the Top-end of the Lid

10. Making a circular piece with 2-inch diameter and sew it to the top-end of the lid.

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 1 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 1

11. Rip a coconut leaf to make a 1-inch stripe, cross one end on top of the stripe making a loop, then put the harder end inside the loop and tighten it making a pentagon shape resembling a star. 

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 2 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 2

12. Put the left end inside and you should see all 5 points of the star, then continue the same procedure until there is no stripe left. Finish by putting the left end of the stripe inside.

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 3 (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Weaving Star-shaped Coconut Leaf 3

13. Sew the finished star-shaped leaf to the top of the container jar lid.

Assembling the Container Jar (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

Assembling the Container Jar

14. Sharpen a small 2-inch-long stick and pierce it through the top of the lid. Close the lid on top of the container jar body. Now you have accomplished your banana-leaf food container.

The Banana-Leaf Container Jar (2021-08-25) by The Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat UniversityThe Office of Arts and Culture, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University

The Banana-Leaf Container Jar

You can use this container jar to contain dried food and use as a souvenir or in religious ceremonies. This also helps preserve our Thai wisdom innovation, making use of natural material to its greatest potential. 

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