Myanmar Traditional Dress DesignBurmese Traditional Dress Design
Made-in-Myanmar: Designer sets ethics on indigenous fashions, life & culture
As Myanmar has become a hotbed for the production of mass-produced goods, young design professionals are using local fashions to conserve the country's artistic legacy and transform the exploiter model." In her Yangon city centre shop, Pyone Thet Thet Kyaw makes her own creations using traditional samples and materials, many from ethnical minorities, to make A-line coats, gowns and thongs.
Secondly, she is adding the high-necked neck of the Ingyi - a narrow top normally used by Myanmar woman, together with a waisted, sarong-like dress - to a coquette-folded dress. "The Burmese really take great pride in their own traditional and ethnical clothing," she said to the AFP in the store about the whirl of the stitching mashines.
"If you modernize traditional patterns, you have to be sure that they are not too conspicuous or too fashionable. "Myanmar is very proud of its traditional garment, which was largely sheltered from the inflow of homogeneous West Asian fashions by the former warjunta.
They closed the land off from external influence for 50 years and strictly monitored what was carried in all publicity. The designer Ma Pont said she should not even show a lightning bolt on her shoulders or armpits when she produced clothing for military-controlled television stations in the 1990s.
Fashions were particularly political at the time when many females clandestinely asked their dressmakers for drafts that emulated the unmistakable styles of Aung San Suu Kyi, the head of the political group. Nowadays, the democratic symbol, who last year de facto led Myanmar's first civil administration in generation, is still hailed for her elegance of Burma's appearance in the country's official performances.
However, while many still like traditional clothing, especially the sarong-like lunggyi, which is used by both men and woman, fashion is beginning to shift. Yangon's burgeoning urban centre is home to the Yangon mid-range, while on the outskirts of the town, manufacturers produce clothing for global manufacturers attracted by their pools of young, cheaper workers.
It' a downside of the business that shop design specialist Pyone Thet Thet Thet Kyaw has seen first-hand. It was this experiment that led them to open their own boutiques and educate young ladies in the arts of making dresses so that they would never have the same destiny. "ever fashions and unethics go on, we'll be the ones who are hurting.
Others such as Mo Hom are working to rescue Myanmar's centuries-old traditional textile industries from the flow of cheaper clothing imports from Thailand and China. Their Yangon shop is full of colorful patterns of silk and wool from Chin and Shan states, where they can be woven by traditional wood weaving machines for severals.
A lot of them are colored with ingredients like strawberry and leaf tee to create subtile colors that blend with traditional ethnical designs and outlines. "Municipal windmills are dead because there is no longer enough consumer demand," said Mo Hom, who studied and worked as a design engineer in New York before returning to Myanmar in 2012.