In Search Of Cheongsam: Exquisite Inspirations

Posted on June 26th, by joanna in Uncategorized, Uncover. No Comments

In Search Of Cheongsam: Exquisite Inspirations

The traditional Chinese dress, the Qipao, also known as Cheongsam, has evolved through the years since the 1920s, and has been worn by Chinese women around the world. It’s symbolism might have changed – from a symbol of modernity in the 20’s in China, the showcase of the Chinese roots for overseas Chinese women in the 30’s and 40’s, to an everyday trendy working dress for the Singapore women in the 50’s and 60’s, to it’s present day versatility of a formal dress as well as a subject of reinterpretation by designers.


In The Mood For Cheongsam at The National Museum of Singapore


We visited the exhibition, In The Mood For Cheongsam (which ran from 28 Mar 2012 – 27 June 2012) at the National Museum of Singapore to view the collection of beautiful pieces. Here are some highlights.


Green Cheongsam with Black and Gold Printed Tree Motif, 1920s, Hong Kong


Blue Cheongsam with Burn-out Floral Motif, Silk Crepe & Velvet, 1930s-1940s, Hong Kong

In the 1930s, the burn-out effect of using chemicals to create a floral pattern on silk and velvet was extremely popular. We like to think that it still is now!



Detailed embroidery of birds and flowers near the collar of a Cheongsam


Maggie Cheung in a beautiful cheongsam on the poster of Wong Kar-wai’s In The Mood For Love film. Image courtesy of Jet Tone FIlms

If you were inspired and want a bespoke Cheongsam for yourself, pay a visit to these Singaporean designers:

Lai Chan
328 North Bridge Road, #02-10, Raffles Hotel Arcade, Singapore 119719
Tel: +65 6338 4806

Amor Meus Design Studio
36 Purvis Street, #02-01 Talib Centre, Singapore 118613
Tel: +65 6336 6930


Tailoring a cheongsam is not as easy as one thinks, with the tailors studying for years for master the perfect cut and fit. If you don’t have the opportunity to go to a tailor, a ready-to-wear version may be the next best thing, but you’ll need to have it altered (by an experienced tailor) to nip in with the curves of your body.


You can also explore the collection at Shanghai Tang, which has a selection of Cheongsams which can be purchased off the rack.

You May Also Like:

"Tunnel Of Love" - Secret Passageway
An Inspiring Couple Cycling Around The World
Summer Market In Tuscany

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


-Act of leaving behind life’s burden, roles, expectations, responsibilities.

-Welcoming new knowledge, developing new relationships, people, new directions.

-Removal + releasing clutter, the unnecessary, negatives.

-Stripping set rules, perceptions, prenotions, assumptions, standards, and old habits.

Day 1 & 2: Tokyo Part 1


Initially we wanted to spend less time in Tokyo and more time in Kyoto/Osaka, but after researching and speaking to friends, it seemed that...

First Trip To Japan – Our 12 day Itinerary


A little background information about the plan for my trip:

For all the travelling I have done in the last 30 years, I somehow have...

Beyond What You Expected – Rethinking the Stage

21+ only – Enter the dark world of an adaption of Lewis Caroll’s well-known piece of Alice and Wonderland – “Then She Fell.” ...

Packing the Right Plastic for International Travels

Planning a trip abroad? Racking up the card is definitely easier than carrying tons of cash around when traveling. Some of the...

Top Tips When Cycling In Malaysia

This article was first published on All photographs curtesy of Robert Tan

If you’ve read our interview with Robert Tan and friends, you’ll realise that...

An Inspiring Journey Through Malaysia On Bicycle

This article was first published on All photographs curtesy of Robert Tan

Two years ago, Robert Tan had an idea – to journey from...

Alila Living: Recreating the spa experience in the comfort of your own home

My first brush with Alila resorts must have been about 2005, when I first visited Alila Ubud in Bali. Blown away by the beautiful...