Samui Wining & Dining
Island living clothing from WaterLilyCaftans.

p104-1So, you have arrived on Samui and have instantly fallen in love with the turquoise ocean, the verdant green mountain views, the warm tropical ambience and the slower paced way of life. Your body feels more at ease in the warmer temperatures and lounging around in swimwear, shorts, t-shirts and singlets seems like second nature. But stop right there! You have a wedding or an important social event to attend this weekend, and everything in your wardrobe or suitcase just seems somehow too tight, too restricting. With hindsight, the style doesn’t fit the occasion or venue, and the fabric feels too thick and too hot to be bearable for a whole afternoon or evening of what should be fun and relaxation in the tropics!


Welcome to the world of Catherine Culwell, owner of WaterLilyCaftans. Catherine moved to Koh Samui three years ago, and she struggled to find clothing that was stylish, beautiful, well-tailored and comfortable. She was looking for clothes that could easily transition from day wear to evening wear, and above all, keep her cool in the 30 degree Celsius and upwards, temperatures. And then, yes, she was invited to a wedding!


On one of her frustrating searches, Catherine stumbled upon an amazing fabric store in Bangkok. It was like an oasis in a city of shopping malls. Chock full of light, flimsy and airy materials. Rayon, chiffon and silks with bright, bold and beautiful colours and patterns, perfect for tropical climates and island living. Her imagination ran wild, and she realised that if she couldn’t find what she was after, then it was probably the same for many others. She was going to have to design those clothes, source the materials and get them made on Samui herself! WaterLilyCaftans was conceived then and there, and a new business was born!


True to her word, Catherine does everything from start to finish. She sources fabric locally, mostly in Thailand, but some from Singapore. She designs the caftans, tops and bags with her Samui based tailors who then hand cut, p104-2sew and even dye some of the pieces, no two pieces are exactly alike. Catherine personally checks every item, so you won’t find any shoddy stitch work. Quality control is top notch, and high on her list of priorities. Her designs are classically stylish, bold and ‘oh so’ comfortable!


You can wear them on the beach or to an afternoon or evening social event, formal or non-formal and yes, they are perfect for tropical beach weddings. These are not short-term ‘this-holiday-only’ clothes. You will be able to wear them for many years to come. One size fits all, so even if you put on a few holiday pounds, you will still feel comfortable and chic. These styles are for all ages and sizes. Catherine’s friends love her clothes and bags so much that they are more than comfortable to do the modelling for her website.


Luxury shouldn’t take effort. Every caftan, top or bag is easy to wear and easy to care for, all are machine washable on a delicate cycle. Just wash and hang to dry, no dry cleaners and definitely no ironing required! Timelessly stylish, you can wear these designs day or night. Visit the website and peruse the current styles. You can order directly from there and choose to pay in eight different currencies. Or contact Catherine directly, she will be more than happy to meet you and bring along some of her creations.


Purchase some classic, stylishly chic, bold and easy to wear pieces from WaterLilyCaftans and you will never again announce that you have nothing to wear!


Karan Ladd


Copyright 2019 Samui Holiday Magazine. All rights reserved Siam Map Company Ltd.