PETALING JAYA – Reigning Miss Universe Malaysia Jane Teoh will surely hope to browse the competition in Bangkok next month with her specially designed national costume called Bangau Perahu.
The set of three pieces of RM7000 is based on an artistic interpretation of the traditional Malaysian craftsmanship of the designer Salleh Hamid.
Salleh, 30, said he spent six months creating the costume based on the ship's crane or sailboat, which is usually seen on traditional fishing boats off the east coast.
"I am inspired by the rich history and cultural beliefs of Malaysia, the authenticity in the artistic craftsmanship of doing ships in the ancient times and in the Awan Larat (clouds) Malay art that we normally see in the sculptures," he added.
He said the suit was designed in three colors using ethylene and vinyl acetate foam and people expected to appreciate.
"I was nervous due to past criticism of the costumes in previous competitions," he admitted.
However, he persevered and decided to choose bangau, as fishermen believe he could protect them while working at sea.
(Miss Miss Universe last year used a national suit inspired by nasi lemak, while Miss Universe Malaysia 2016 put a monkey with the Petronas Towers.)
Teoh, who staged the suit during a preview in Myeg Tower yesterday, said he felt "very good" wearing the suit with a pair of six-inch boots designed by local shoe rhea Tan Yen Yen.
"I am excited and proud to be able to use these beautiful creations to represent my country," said Teoh, 21.
For the evening dress category, the student-cum-model of finance and accounting will wear a silver dress by the designers Amar Madfie and Zeed Jameel, whose brand is known as Amaze.
The upper part of the shoulder bodice with a soft silhouette silhouette shows rows of embroidery and intricate mesh patterns.
"The national costume is rich in Malay culture and the evening dress is no less than exquisite, thanks to our talented designers," said Teoh, who spent a year preparing for the contest after being crowned in January.
The Miss Universe Malaysia national director, ex-queen of beauty Datin Elaine Daly, expressed his hope that Malaysia would win in the contest.
For the national segment of gift auctions where competitors bring memories of their respective countries to be auctioned for charity, Teoh will present a freshwater pearl necklace in three layers of the classic Borneo Pearls collection.
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