Sundanese fashion is just like its people who always try to adapt with the times.
The so-called modern life has made the Bandungese people stop wearing the traditional Sundanese fashion everyday the way our ancestors did many years ago.
But loss of identity has made Indonesians, including the Sundanese, go back to our roots. This includes our fashion. Mostly you can see the Sundanese fashion style during annual, monthly, or weekly events.
A long time ago, traditional female Sundanese dancers were well-known for their sensual fashion and dancing styles. In this era, however, Indonesian Muslim women who wear the jilbab (hijab) are not required to wear the sensual, traditional costumes anymore. Meaning, they can still wear their jilbab while dancing.
One of the Sundanese dance maestros Irawati Durban Ardjo, who’s also an architect, danced with her first student, Irawati Mayangsari, in 1984. In this video, you can see that Irawati still wears the sensual Sundanese traditional costume while dancing with her teacher who wears the jilbab.
Actually, wearing a non-traditional costume is not a big problem. It’s just that nowadays, a minority community in Indonesia that calls themselves as the “defender of Islam” prohibits all of forms of traditional art which shows the female body in public.
Aside from Irawati, another Sundanese dance maestro, Indrawati Lukman, shows the dance she has choreographed alongside a dancer who wears an iconic shawl – the highlight of the dance.
The traditional Sundanese male fashion, on the other hand, is simpler than the female’s although both make use of silk in stunning colors. Maybe it’s the cheerful characteristic of the Sundanese that makes us love to show stunning colors in our fashion style. Just like what performers wear for the Sisingaan dance (in my personal opinion, it’s kind of male cheerleader).
But the daily Sundanese male fashion is simpler than this. Usually, they only wear black shirts.
Nowadays, the traditional Sundanese fashion is being hyped again. Both the Sundanese and the non-Sundanese who share a love for Sundanese tradition are all interested with its fashion.
Being of Sundanese (my father) and Minangnese (my mother) descent, I find Sundanese fashion very enjoyable to see.
My love for Sundanese culture has pushed me to search for Sundanese events and shoot its fashion style.