I have a fond childhood memory of my mother bringing home a magnificently colorful dragon fabric that would soon envelop our den. Within a matter of weeks, the room was swathed in an array of Asian accents…striking new window treatments, fabulous throw pillows…and yes, even a pair of wondrously-bizarre chairs! 

My new everyday scene transported me to a magical land nestled amongst the rolling foothills of the Himalayan Mountains, a majestic ancient kingdom called Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand. This mystical place was home to roaring dragons, blossoming chrysanthemums and colorfully torched lanterns flocking together in harmony.  

It’s no coincidence that one of Schumacher's best-loved designs, Chiang Mai Dragon, was originally derived from and inspired by an exuberant Art Deco print from this same region in Thailand.  The post 1920s trade routes eventually opened the door to these fascinating portals of exotic drama and intriguing design possibilities and brought them to people all over the world. Until then, this isolated gem was only accessible through an arduous river journey, an elephant-back trip, or best of all (and in my case), a child’s imagination. This isolation helped preserve Chiang Mai's distinctive charm throughout history until its potential was unleashed and eventually set free to roam our family den in a more modern day. 

It’s because of this that I plead - don’t limit yourself to just a pair of throw pillows. You know I always say, “Go bold and go big.” Embrace the drama and mystery that is Chiang Mai.  You never know, you may begin your own personal “Chiang Reaction” and your child may one day end up writing a story about it!

Patrick Casey is the manager of Green Front Interiors and Rugs in Raleigh, a store offering luxury furnishings, rugs and designs. Visit the Green Front store at 2004 Yonkers Road in Raleigh, or call them at 919-754-9754. For more information, visit www.greenfront.com.