It is almost Hari Raya Aidil Fitri here and I am in the midst of preparing for the festivities. This year I had my tailor make me another set of 'Baju Melayu', the traditional Malay outfit that Malay men usually use during these types of festive seasons. There is the Hari Raya Haji, or the Aidil Adha celebrations also that some of us don this outfit. Of course, it is also worn during family weddings too and (in black) at official government or royal functions. This is my latest, fuschia coloured baju Melayu in Linen.
It has always been linen for me for more than fifteen years. Prior to that I have had them made out of cotton, poly viscose and also the dreaded polyester which is so commonly used here. This was the reason I actually abhor wearing them until I discovered linen.
You can see why from the photograph above.
I have paired it this time with a favourite samping of mine - a hand woven piece which is called 'kain tenun' which basically means woven cloth. It goes around the waist after wearing the baju melayu. This too is made out of a loose weave cotton with some gold thread interwoven into it.
But the main aim of this post is to show you why you need to wear linen during Hari Raya. It is super hot when you are out visiting relatives or entertaining people in the kampung. Not all the places you have to go has air-conditioning. Dressing the part AND dressing comfortably can be achieved. So the baju Melayu is in linen for me and is also cut with a loose fit so that air circulates easily.
Other details you can see include stud buttons in 14k plated white gold with Borneo pearls (a gift from my sister in-law) and a hand painted Malaysian batik pocket square which my wife bought at one of the Craft Expos at the Kompleks Kraf, Jalan Conlay.