Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Shapely 'Kebaya'

Batik Sarawak with Orang Ulu designs printed in varying patterns and colours.
This morning we paid a visit to India Street upon the insistence of my daughter who will be going back to Kuala Lumpur tomorrow after a ten days break in Sarawak. She wanted to buy the 'kebaya' with Sarawak batik designs on it. The 'kebaya' is a tight fitting dress worn by Malaysian girls and women that to me make them look shapely and very attractive. The blouse is always long sleeved and highly embroidered. The 'sarong' ( long piece of cloth to wrap around the body from the waist) is now being given new lease of life by incorporating Sarawak native designs from the Orang Ulu and Iban ethnic groups.

The voile kebaya blouse matches well with the polyester silk sarong in intricate Orang Ulu design motifs. The Orang Ulu design motifs are derived mainly from their immediate environment like plant life ( e.g. ferns, flowers, leaves, buds, twiners, fruits,etc) and animal forms like lizards, birds, dogs, etc. The sense of movement is achieved by letting the spiral lines flow, connect and merge like Sarawak's many rivers flowing into the open sea.

The middle kebaya on the right is hand painted in contemporary batik style with abstract and free flowing motifs. I love the mixture of colours and the soft texture of the material used.

1 comment:

Protege said...

You know what; I totally LOVE this style. I would wear this immediately. I so understand why your daughter wanted to buy these clothes.
I have to say the one on the small, middle picture is by far my favourite - I like the design with the flare in the sleeves and the print is very subtle, but beautiful.;)