Thai Designer Nagara & The Floating World (BIFW 2015)

Nagara Sambandaraksa can be regarded as the most renowned Thai fashion designer. He has designed for Thai royalty and his creations are strongly connected with his Thai heritage and regional influences. Thus, his designs are predominantly custom-made pieces created from Thai silk, borcade and other premium materials.

 Nagara’s Story

Renowned Thai Fashion Designer Nagara Sambandaraksa

Renowned Thai Fashion Designer Nagara Sambandaraksa*

At the age of 15, Nagara left Thailand to study interior design in the United States and the UK. However, each summer he returned to Bangkok in order to study the art of fabric painting and design. After finishing his studies in the US and the UK, Nagara went to Omoto School near Kyoto in Japan to study Japanese traditional arts in textile design.

Nagara's models at the BIFW 2015, The Floating World*

Nagara’s models at the BIFW 2015, The Floating World*

At the beginning of his career, Nagara made home furnishing fabrics and textile design. He started fashion design in 1983 and today he is well-known for his ‘East meets West’ designs and the distinct oriental character of his creations. Nagara fashion is a regular representative at Bangkok Fashion Shows and the International Fashion Week.

Nadech Kugimiya & Urassaya Sperbund for Nagara*

Nadech Kugimiya & Urassaya Sperbund for Nagara*

He travels a lot to find inspiration in other countries. Hence, he particularly loves the cities of India, China and Japan. However, he also likes European cities like Paris and Florence for their inspiring character. He feels the need to search for inspiration in other countries but at the same time Thailand’s fashion scene is becoming more dynamic and younger designers are receiving more support.

Thai Fashion Designer Nagara 'The Floating World' at BIFW 2015*

Thai Fashion Designer Nagara ‘The Floating World’ at BIFW 2015*

He thinks that it is also important to consider trends in fashion and to be guided by the younger generation. Nevertheless, the special feature of Nagara’s fahion is that he produces all the fabrics himself. This includes the weaving, printing and painting of the fabrics. Thus, he needs more time in creating the designs but they are unique. Hence, his signature style is using the world famous Thai silk.

The Floating World by Nagara BIFW 2015*

Janie Tienphosuwan at The Floating World by Nagara BIFW 2015*

We may describe Nagara’s style as flamboyant, extraordinary and yet simple. What is more, his designs are exotic. For instance, his 2014 collection was inspired by his travels to India. Hence, the designs are very colourful, oriental and many different fabrics are combined and mixed together. Nagara uses exotic materials like peacock feathers and native Indian floral prints. His recent collection is called ‘The Floating World’ and was featured at the Bangkok International Fashion Week 2015. This collection distinctively combines Japanese elements with a flamboyant design.

Yaya Urassaya Sperbund at the Bangkok International Fashion Week 2015*

Yaya Urassaya Sperbund at the Bangkok International Fashion Week 2015*

Our popular models Urassaya Sperbund and Nadech Kugimiya presented these marvellous and amazing designs among others.

Finally, we may say that Nagara is Thailand’s most renowned fashion designer with good reason. His designs are extravagant and they combine Western and Eastern elements.

Yours, Sirinya

(All pictures in this post, photo credit: Nagara Naga, FB page)




Top 5 Posts: Nadech & Yaya Are Number One

Do you like to know which are Sirinya’s Thailand Blog’s most popular posts? Well, since I’ve been writing my blog for more than nine months now, I think it’s time for a small review of the Top 5 Posts.

Top 5 Posts: Nadech & Yaya Are Number One

Can you guess who is the number one? Yeah, it does not come as a surprise to me that it is Nadech & Yaya.

Nadech & Yaya (photo Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

First among the Top 5 Posts: Nadech & Yaya (photo Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

I think you all know this cute on-screen couple that is also frequently paired for fashion shootings and TV commercials. Both Nadech and Yaya are very talented young half-Thai actors popular in Thailand but also in other Southeast Asian countries like Vietnam. For instance, there is the charming Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage that provides fans with the most recent news about the two actors.

Nadech & Yaya in The Rising Sun (phot:o konchke.blogspot.com)

Nadech Kugimiya & Yaya Urassaya Sperbund in The Rising Sun (photo: konchke.blogspot.com)

Not surprisingly either, my article about Yaya Urassaya Sperbund is the second most viewed post on my blog. I think Yaya is so famous and loved by her fans because she is very lovely, playful, effortless charming but also a bit childish sometimes which makes her particularly amiable.

Yaya Urassaya Sperbund (photo: Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

Yaya Urassaya Sperbund (photo: Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

Most recently, Yaya graduated from Chulalongkorn University. Congrats, dear Yaya! You are very talented 🙂

Yaya Urassaya just graduated from Chulalongkorn University (photo: Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

Yaya Urassaya just graduated from Chulalongkorn University (photo: Nadech & Yaya Vietnam Fanpage)

Next follows an article about another young luk kreung actress – do you guess who it is? It’s actress and model Mai Davika Hoorne who became famous with her role as Mae Nak in the movie ‘Phi Mak Phra Khanong’. No wonder she is so popular – she is not only lovely but her beauty is also classic. Thus, she has been the cover girl on numerous glossy magazines like the Vogue for instance.

Thai-Belgian actress Davika Hoorne (photo: Mai Davika FB page)

Thai-Belgian actress Davika Hoorne (photo: Mai Davika FB page)

This leads us to my number four post which is about Thai-German actor Mario Maurer. It seems that the most popular posts on my blog are all about young actors. Well, Mario has been in ‘Phi Mak Phra Khanong’ in the leading role alongside Mai Davika. Apart from acting, Mario also does a lot of TV commericals and has been advertising for TAT ( Tourism Authority of Thailand), thus promoting different areas of Thailand.

Mario (photo credit: TAT Kunming)

Mario Maurer (photo credit: TAT Kunming)

Most recently, there has been a cute Mario Maurer doll (Funko Pop). A must for all true Mario fans, I guess 😉

Mario Maurer with his Funko Pop (photo Mario Maurer FBpage)

Mario Maurer with his Funko Pop (photo: Mario Maurer FB page)

Hence, last but not least, my fifth most popular post varies from the rest since it is about the Thai Tradition of Tattooing called Sak Yant. I can understand that this is a subject of interest to many people since to some extent, Sak Yant has also become popular in Western countries. What is more, Sak Yant differs from ‘common’ tattoos because they are supposed to have a magical meaning and power.

Tattooed Monk of Wat Bang Pra (photo credit sak-yant.com)

Tattooed monk of Wat Bang Pra (photo credit: sak-yant.com)

Did you like this recap? And do you like the top four young actors as much as I do? I think we all love Nadech & Yaya and are thrilled by the Yadech-Factor 🙂 Thus, enjoy reading my blog and getting to know more about Thai (popular) culture!

Yours, Sirinya




Nadech Kugimiya: Thai-Austrian Actor

For some years now, half-Thai actor and model Nadech Kugimiya has been a popular face in Thai media and the entertainment industry. Hence, he is famous on Channel 3. I think there is hardly any Thai teenager who does not know him. As a devoted reader of my blog, you may know that I have dealt with him shortly in my article about Nadech & Yaya. Nonetheless, there is of course a lot more to say about him seen individually 🙂

Nadech Kugimiya

Nadech (photo credit: Nadech Kugimiya FC, FB page)

Nadech (photo credit: Nadech Kugimiya FC, FB page)

Nadech, nicknamed Barry, was born 1991 in Khonkaen and his original name was Chonlathit Yodprathum. He is considered to be of Thai-Chinese and Austrian descent. At the beginning of his career there was some confusion about his origins and background because people generally assumed that he must be part-Japanese because of his last name ‘Kugimiya’. What is more, he also has the appearance of a Japanese manga character with his light complexion, thick eyebrows and doe eyes 🙂

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nES93pTPO2Q

However, Barry was brought up by his aunt Sundarat and her husband, the Japanese Yoshio Kugimiya. Nadech adores his Japanese foster father and this is the reason why he himself claims to be half-Japanese, even though he is not. However, Nadech does not know Japanese but speaks fluently in Thai and Isan dialect.

Barry (photo credit: women.sanook.com)

‘Barry’ Nadech Kugimiya (photo credit: women.sanook.com)

Barry was discovered at the age of 16 and has been working as a model, actor and singer since then. Up until today, he has been in numerous Thai commercials and on magazine covers. For example, he was in commercials like Trident chewing gum with actress Pachrapa Chaichua, Shokubutsu shower cream for Men, Samsung Monte 3G, Yamaha Fino, Baoji shoes and Lays with Thai-Norwegian actress ‘Yaya’ Urassaya Sperbund.

What is more, he was the first brand ambassador and brand presenter for Thai Air Asia. He was also a surprise guest flight attendant serving snacks to the delighted passengers in 2014 🙂

Nevertheless, Barry is not only a ‘pretty face’ – he has been studying Communication Arts at Rangsit University. Hence, most recently he has presented his short film ‘Mr. Peter’s Project’ which is a work to complete his B.A. at Rangsit. The film is concerned with the Nan’s forest conservation. Hence, Barry’s aim is to raise an awareness of deforestation. Here is the film, though only available in Thai.

Nadech has been in numerous TV series and films since 2010 when he debuted in Ngaorak Luangjai.  Furthermore, he gained  popularity with his work in the series 4 Hua Jai Haeng Khun Khao (Duang Jai Akkanee or Akkanee’s Heart). He played the character of Fai Akkanee Adisuan starring alongside Urassaya Sperbund.

Nadech & Yaya in Akkannee's Heart (photo credit: iheartlakorns.com)

Nadech & Yaya in Akkanee’s Heart (photo credit: iheartlakorns.com)

What is more, he was in Gamerai Gamerak or Love Game Evil Game as “Saichon/Charles Makovich” and in The Rising Sun series also starring alongside Yaya Urassaya. He had a very popular role in Sunset at Chaophraya (Khu Kam, 2013) playing the Japanese engineering officer Kobori who falls in love with a nationalistic Thai beauty called Angsumalin. He also sang the song to this movie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ok715s5KJBs

Hence, it does not come as a surprise that he also won Best Actor from Starpics Thai Film Award for his role of Kobori in Sunset at Chaophraya. This is really well-deserved!

Finally, we may say that Nadech Kugimiya is certainly one of the hottest luk kreung actors in Thailand at the moment. With good reason, he can be called Mr. Everywhere because he is frequently spotted on magazine covers, in television commercials, billboards and soap operas. You cannot escape Barry, thus you must love him 🙂

Yours, Sirinya




‘Yaya’ Urassaya Sperbund: Thai-Norwegian Actress

If you are into Thai popular culture, you certainly know the lovely Thai-Norwegian actress and model ‘Yaya’ Urassaya Sperbund. I have dealt with her shortly in my post about ‘Nadech & Yaya’ because they are the most favourite and desirable couple in Thai media today. However, there is a lot more to say about the young actress seen individually 🙂

Yaya Urassaya (photo credit: Lostinheaven, sharerice.com)

Yaya Urassaya (photo credit: Lostinheaven, sharerice.com)

Yaya Urassaya – Her Story

Yaya (ญาญ่า) was born in 1993 to a Thai mother and a Norwegian father in Pattaya. She was discovered as a model at the age of 14 but when she was younger, she claimed to have been like the ugly duckling. Thus, for some years she had to wear braces but that is in the past. Today, she is a gorgeous and amazing actress famous in Thailand.

Yaya (photo credit: women.sanook.com)

Yaya (photo credit: women.sanook.com)

Even though she grew up in Thailand, she could not speak much of Thai language in her younger years because she went to an International School, had predominantly American friends and at home she would talk English to her father. Later when she worked with Channel 3, she had to learn Thai in order to be able to speak the language properly.

Nevertheless, Yaya is a Thai girl at heart and her mother also taught her Thai mannerisms and politeness. What is more, she is a Buddhist and went frequently to the temple with her mother as a small girl.

Yaya (photo credit: Volume 183, NadechYaya at Pantip.com)

Yaya (photo credit: Volume 183, NadechYaya at Pantip.com)

She is a self-confident model and actress today but when she talks she sometimes appears to be shy. However, Yaya smiles and laughs a lot. Hence, it is really surprising that she actually wants to become a lawyer or a politician. Being an actress was not her first career choice but of course she is happy with that too 🙂 In fact, she is now one of the highest paid actresses in Thailand! In the following clip, she talks about her upbringing and her career as an actress. This is really interesting!

Hence, Yaya has been in numerous commercials and she is also frequently spotted as a cover girl on glossy magazines like Volume, Image, Mistine and WE, just to name a few.

As far as I know, she has been in about 13 dramas up until today. In TV series, she is frequently paired with Nadech Kugimiya, for instance in The Rising Sun. Thus, it does not come as a surprise that she has already won many awards for her dramatic ability. For instance, she was titled ‘Popular Leading Actress’ by the Mekkhala Television Awards. Her most famous series is ‘Game Rai Game Rak’ starring as Nang Fah (Fahlada) alongside Nadech Kugimiya.

In her second series called ‘Torranee Ni Nee Krai Krong’, she also starred with Nadech. In this film she played the character of Nong Nee (Darunee). Yaya herself also recorded the theme song for the series ‘Torranee Ni Nee Krai Krong’ which is called ‘Ar Karn Ruk’ (Symptoms of Love).

What is more, she also was in Thai-French singer Chin Chinawut’s music video ‘My bad habit’. Hence, she is also a skilled dancer and a talented singer as demonstrated in the first clip, in which she sings a duet with James Ji.

Finally, we may say that Yaya Urassaya is an amazing, versatile and promising young luk kreung actress. With good reason, she is so popular and has millions of fans 🙂

Yours, Sirinya