Karen (Kayan, Padaung) women are skilled in sewing and dyeing and weaving, they usually wear, white “V” neck blouse with combinations very colourful patterns and beads for decoration. They wear their long hair tied in a bun and covered with scarves. Long neck woman using a loom to weave in their traditional manner or scarves for sale.
The Padaung (Kayan) is a group of the Karen people, a Sino-Thai ethnic minority of Myanmar (Burma). Due to conflict with the military regime in Burma, many Padaung tribes people fled into neighbouring Thailand.
The neck rings of a woman are, in fact, a single brass coil placed around the neck. The first coil is applied when the girl is five years old and with the growing is replaced by a longer coil.
Kayan women might appear to have long necks but this is an optical illusion. As the coils are added they push the collar bone and ribs down, creating the appearance of a longer neck. Removing the coils does not cause a woman’s neck to collapse, although the muscles weaken.
Hua Chon Phue Village, northern Thailand