This is our gem … Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei and Thailand wants kebaya to be included in UNESCO heritage list


SINGAPORE/KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 (AFP): In a Malaysian boutique, a small group of seamstresses sit at clattering sewing machines, stitching bright flowers and leaves into kebayas, traditional blouses worn by women around South-East Asia.

What makes kebayas special is that they are worn by women of all ethnic backgrounds in a diverse region, according to Lim Yu Lin, who co-runs the family business her grandmother founded in 1955.

“It’s not only meant for one culture,” she told AFP.

In a moment of unity, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Brunei and Thailand have jointly nominated the kebaya for the UN’s prestigious intangible cultural heritage list, with a decision expected in 2024.

Suited to hot tropical weather, the intricately embroidered blouse is usually long-sleeved, and ranges from loose-fitting…

Read more…