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White cotton undergarments and bamboo vests were used by both the bride and bridegroom. These served to protect the wedding garments from the profuse perspiration that resulted from wearing these heavy and elaborate garments in a tropical climate.
The phoenix and peony are recurrent motifs found on Peranakan wedding garments. Although these motifs are also found on wedding garments from Penang, the garments there differ slightly in colour and choice of motifs. More often, there is a larger range employed, such as the peacock, rabbit, pheasant, qilin, chrysanthemum and lotus, probably as a result of family commissions that demanded special and unique motifs. Some Peranakan wedding garments from Penang are trimmed with rabbit fur, indicating that they were meant for a wedding that took place in the 'winter' months at the end of the lunar year.
Malacca, late 19th or early 20th century
Silk, gold thread, cotton
This wedding outfit belonged to Sharron Chee Guek Kee, a member of one of the oldest Peranakan families in Malacca. It comprises several embroidered pieces, including a robe, a skirt, two forearm attachments, a five-layered cape, and four tie-like hangings. Among the fine and complex embroideries are auspicious Chinese motifs of phoenixes, peonies, and butterflies. Peranakans of Singapore and Malaya imported these silk garments from China for their weddings during the late 19th and early 20th century.