Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Malaysian Fashion

Headscarves for sale!


Malaysian women's fashion is a mirror of the country's multicultural ethnic and religious make up. Most Malays are muslims and their degree of devoutness shows in their dress code. You can see the whole gamut of fully covered women to the more modern version of jeans and head scarfes. The Chinese on the other hand are very modern and enjoy showing some skin. That results sometimes in the intriguing image of a Chinese woman in super tight and short hot pants (a lot of women wear hot pants - they seem to love them) and tank top standing in line at the bus stop next to Malayan Muslim Lady, who is fully covered and wearing a headscarve. The difference couldn't be bolder. I have seen this many times. Unfortunately never had my camera with me to capture this anachronism.There are also Indian women who will dress very modern in Jeans and t-shirt or sport Saris or other traditional Indian dress. I found the juxtaposition of traditional and modern dress in everyday life in Malaysian very intriguing.

A woman completely covered and in black is mostly from Saudi Arabia. This is the typical strict Saudi Muslim dress code. The Malayan Muslims are more colorful. As seen here in this next photo. They wear a long nigth shirt-like dress, called a baju kurung, that is usually boldly patterned over a very long skirt. Often their headscarves can be also patterend or at least colorful.
This is the traditional Malayan dress: a long fitted jacket, called kebaya over a sarong. This combination is also worn in Indonisia. Muslim women will add a head scarf.
The modern and more liberal version of Muslim dress code, can be seen here on this stylish women in jeans, heels with her chic handbag and shades. A lot of women will also wear jeans and snug t-shirt and a black headscarf.
Ladies of Indian decent are often seen dressed very modern, but with a red dot on their forehead. But many are also still sporting traditional dress, like these in the photo.


It seems that Chinese women's appearance is the most western. They also show the most skin, often wearing short skirts and hot pants. I photographed one that looked rather decent, compared to some hotties I saw.

24 comments:

jisly said...

hi...im a university student,i wan to do my research essay..i saw your article is about malaysia fashion..i wan to know that all the picture is take by yourself or u found it from internet?
i want to get the picture and sources that for the modern muslim wear jeans and high heel..can u tell me how u get it?thanks~

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