When I visited Penang last year, I paid a visit to the lady who made me my first kebaya all those years ago. I didn't order anything then - my cousin was theoretically the one buying the kebaya and we were in a hurry so I didn't have much time to shop on my own account. But after leaving Penang, and a number of WhatsApps later, I had asked the proprietor to bring over a few blue kebayas when she next came to Singapore.
It was a tough choice, with dragonflies, floral patterns and ducks all fighting for my attention. But my interest was first piqued by a turquoise blue kebaya with a brilliantly coloured pair of peacocks on the front in golden yellow and orange. I wore it around Christmas, over pants. And to the Peranakan mass on Chinese New Year eve over my most favourite green sarong skirt. But somehow they didn't quite go...
|My blue and red combination|
And fortunately enough, my aunt gave me a pair of shoes which her Mother-in-law gave her and which she didn't really feel went with her own clothing. But it went very nicely with my peacocks and sarong skirt!
As many people have admired my kebaya, what has also been happening is that I have been giving the name of my kebaya contact to various friends and relatives, and even a few colleagues. And because she comes down to Singapore quite frequently to "deliver" to her customers, you don't even need to visit Penang! As such, a lot of them have ended up making purchases and so now I have now indeed acquired "most favoured customer" status. Indeed she is quite well reputed, as her designs are quite unusual and different from the rather standard designs you get in the mass manufactured kebaya shops. Of course, you pay a little more but I think it is well worth it. You can find out more about County Fair Boutique on its Facebook page and also on Time Out.
I have to admit that my last visit, I didn't just buy a kebaya but also a chili hot cheongsam with beautiful embroidery below. So maybe come Chinese New Year, there will be another photo update of my embroidered purchases.