09 November 2006

Handicrafts and Traditional Arts of Melaka

" Melaka Handicrafts"

"Bound Feet Shoes"

Once you're in Melaka, don't forget to go shopping for souvenirs. There is no greater lost than visiting a beautiful place without bringing home the memories. Memories that can be touched,held and told to another. Like some said, a picture equals a thousand words. So, how much will a piece of souvenir tell? Probably more than anyone can ever imagine. We want you to bring back souvenirs which will remind you of Melaka again and again.

In my life, i've been travelling around the world like Dubai, Beijing & Nanjing, China, Singapore, Spain and other else. At home, i have hundred of souvenirs with different memories.

Melaka is the place for those traditional arts and crafts still surviving. Practised mainly by the older generation of craftsmen these are typically individual enterprises whose products are unique and attractive. Unfortunately many of the skills are dying out and unlikely to survive the present practitioners. The products range is varied.

Nyonya Beaded Slippers

Beaded slippers were a must have for the Straits-born Chinese women known as Peranakan Cina or Nyonya. Known as kasut manek-manek they were used for formal occasion like weddings. The material used include silk cloth, gold thread and multi coloured beads. The covers of these slippers are handmade from coloured glass beads, sewn bead by bead. Embroiderers adept at intermixing the coloured beads create a wide range of designs. When the covers are ready they are sewn to leather soles which can be flat or slightly heeled.

Wooden Clogs

From an era long gone by, these clogs called terompah were usually worn within the confines of the home. In Melaka town today clog makers still hand make these pieces of footwear in a variety of sizes, colours and designs, low or high heeled. The wood used for the base is usually senduk(endospermum malacceuse), mahang(maranga sp), longan(euphoria longan) or meranti(shorea sp) while the top cover can be made of plastic or canvas. The Nyonya women preferred metal knobs, in some cases of silver, to give a dainty look to their footwear. Each clog had a screwed-in metal knob instead of the rubber bands over clogs in general use.

Best Regards,

Saiful Anuar

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