Each time she accompanied her father to watch P. Ramlee's classic film featuring the graceful and well-dressed singer-actress, Saloma, BA(Hons) Fashion Design and Textiles alumna Iris Zulfa Binte Mohamad Isa was filled with admiration for the legendary fashion star of the 1950s to 1960s.
Her graduation collection, Sunburnt Heart, explored a new perspective on Malay traditions. She combined textile techniques such as heat setting and traditional batik motifs to create new digital prints. Paying homage to Saloma, she deconstructed the kebaya to give it a new look. The collection explores what the kebaya is and what it can be for the modern Malay woman.
"Some people are quite strict about tradition and feel that we should not change it but maintain and preserve it. I discussed with my lecturer about how this discussion could continue without offending anyone and how to ensure that it remains in line with the demands of Malay culture. I developed an implicit understanding of areas where I could not step beyond certain limits, but could still fight for something new and fresh. I don't want to destroy tradition. Instead, I want to reinterpret the kebaya," Iris shares in this interview with Berita Harian.
Image: Berita Harian