New Year, New Clothes

17 January 2017

Shop for your Chinese New Year outfit from these local labels. 

With Chinese New Year falling early this year, we’re left with very little time in between festivities to look for new clothes. Symbolising a fresh start, buying new clothes is an important tradition, but shopping for Chinese New Year clothes can be daunting, making it tempting to pull the fast fashion trigger and cave to generic high street brands. While the romance of getting a qipao tailor-made is a luxury reserved for forward planners, the deep-pocketed, or rich and organised people, you needn’t settle for fast fashion just yet.

Here, we’ve selected several local labels to shop from for Chinese New Year based on two crucial factors:

Comfort: Chinese New Year is a time for visiting and feasting. This calls for the appropriate gear. Light materials are necessary to maximise ventilation in our humid climate. Forgiving cuts and waistlines are de rigueur for unrestrained eating.

Personality: We urge you not to fold under fast-fashion labels lest you risk twinning with your cousin in the annual family photograph. The last time it was socially acceptable to be photographed in identical outfits with your relatives was when you were a child, defenceless against your mother’s whim and fancy.

Now that we’ve established the critical factors for picking out your next Chinese New Year outfit, let’s take a look at these sumptuous offerings from some of Malaysia’s best.

Cassey Gan
The prints and silhouettes of perennial smile-maker Cassey Gan’s dresses and separates will add a playful burst to the celebrations. Her form-defying silhouettes give a sense of freedom and a quiet confidence to the female form. Featuring plenty of curves, unique shapes and vibrant shades in her latest collection, you’ll certainly be bringing the huat to the party.

Tarik Jeans
Go full local with the rich, cultural designs of Tarik Jeans. The Cuban-style Batik shirt (pictured) from their Anak Liar collection will have you teaching the uncles a thing or two on how to really rock a batik shirt. The label also features cheeky graphic t-shirts and high quality Malaysian-made denim for your annual replenishment of street cred.

d.d. collective
Lucille's Forest Blouse from d.d. collective is an absolute stunner and checks all the boxes for a winning Chinese New Year outfit. Made of silk organza, this statement blouse is light and airy to the touch. The mismatched multi-colour lace florals are reminiscent of peonies and is very forgiving when you’re at course eight of your ten-course reunion dinner. Double happiness.

Curator of cute, Chiyo delivers with their whimsical CHI-pao collection that features cotton linen maxi dresses and coordinating tops and midi skirts. Their Bib Qipao (not pictured) features a loose fit and even comes with pockets – ideal for holding angpaos. The collection’s bright colours, bold Prada SS2013-esque floral appliques and mandarin collar scream revolution chic.

Bonus: RAD x Hayden Koh
If you’re unwilling to buy a new outfit you’ll likely wear only once, why not opt to rent instead? The Boundless Lady collection marks the maiden collaboration between online dress rental service Rent a Dress and Malaysian fashion designer Hayden Koh. Inspired by traditional Chinese lingerie, this bold and sensual collection features eveningwear designed with the modern, sexy, and empowered woman in mind.

By Yilynn Chan
Images courtesy of respective brands featured.

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