Penang is a state that is rich with historical heritage that reflects some of the cultures that has been assimilated. History has also seen the influx of people from China and India, who as merchants came to stay.
The island is populated by three major races: the Malays, Chinese and Indians, each with its own colourful culture, tradition and customs. This is nowhere better represented than their dressing. The Malays are noted for their ‘baju Kebaya Labuh’ and ‘baju Kurung’ worn by the women and for men ‘baju Melayu Cekak Musang’. The Indians wear jackets over a vest matched with a ‘sarong pelikat’ and hat while their women choose to wear the ‘baju Kebaya Labuh’ or ‘baju Kebaya Pendek Bersulam’. The mainstream Chinese womenfolk are usually dressed in their samfoo or cheongsam while their counterpart, commonly known as Nyonyas (Straits born Chinese), are resplendent in their ‘baju Kebaya Pendek’ matched with batik sarongs, or ‘Kebaya Labuh Nyonya’.