Date of Issue: 02 November 2002
Denomination :30 Cent (2 designs); 50 Cent (2 designs)
Stamp Size: 28.46mm x 42.58mm
Miniature Sheet Denomination: RM2.00
Miniature Sheet Size: 70mm x 100mm
Stamp Size in Miniature Sheet: 35mm x 70mm
Sheet Content: 10 Stamps
Paper: SPM Watermarked, Phosphor Coated
Printing Process: Lithography
This became the kebaya (be) rendah. Attracted by the colorful Nyonyas picked up their embroidery needles and multi-hued treads and sought to carry the patterns from the sarongs over onto the top. Thus was born the embroidered voile kebaya.
Initial pieces were painstakingly and lovingly hand-embroidered but this process was later quickened with the apperance of sewing machines. Such fine handiwork - usually with one-off designs that made them exclusively to the owner - became the pride of the wearer. Most of the embroidered motifs were repetitive and adapted from either single or an assortment of flowers, insects, fishes, and fruits while some were thematic and based on certain festivities such as weddings, Easter, and other festivities. The main motifs were further highlighted when set against an intricate web-like base of time-consuming embroidered cut-work. Heavily embroidered kebayas are worn during festive gatherings while simple scallop-edged ones are for daily activities. Brightly colored fabric and exuberant embroidery are said to suit younger maidens while older womenfolk prefer more subdued tones. White, blue or green ones are reserved for mourning or to attend wakes.
This lovely piece of art is traditionally worn with matching batek kerosang. Sadly, the artisans producing these lovely kebayas are diminishing as tastes and fashions change. With this in mind, YA Bhg Datin Seri Endon Mahmood, wife of Deputy Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, has been collecting them over the past decade and taken the liberty to record these cultural treasures for posterity in her book entitled The Nyonya Kebaya. It is hoped that with this book, interest in this cultural heritage of ours will be rejuvenated and interest in wearing the Nyonya Kebaya rekindled.