Personally, I love a well-made cheongsam for special occasions, and much like a bespoke suit can, a well-tailored, perfectly designed cheongsam can look sharp, smart and extremely covetable if it’s done right. It’s time we shake off any connotations we have of them being old-fashioned, restrictive or stereotypically Orientalist and embrace them for the beautiful, expressive sartorial statements that they can be!
If you don’t have the time or patience to buy your own fabric and get one tailor-made, here are 9 stunning brands which you can buy from (and always get it altered later if you need to).
Image: Peter Kor
Peter Kor’s atelier has been hard at work to revive and revitalise his brand. His ready-to wear pieces come in limited quantities per style and are made in washable silks, linen and cotton.
RTW prices range from $199-499, custom-made pieces start from $799 with couture fittings by appointment only.
The atelier is located at 15A Purvis Street, Singapore 188594
Opens daily, Monday - Sunday, 11am - 7pm
+65 6333 4434
Lark & Peony
This two-piece set with a mandarin collar is the definitive modern way to work a traditional look. The pastel, batik culottes are perfect for a Peranakan twist and to work a prevailing 2016 trend.
Lace and cotton two-piece set, $248, shop here
This layered Vietnamese silhouette in a tangerine orange and batik pattern combination is modern elegance personified.
Japanese thick printed cotton cheongsam, $288, shop here
The Singapore go-to designer for her modern reinventions of the cheongsam and other Asian traditional wear (and coincidentally our Young Woman Achiever of 2015) Priscilla Shunmugam’s designs are ever present in our edit of quintessential, modern, Chinese attire. Our 2016 Chinese New Year favourites are these evening-appropriate sheer panelled beauties.
For daytime, these classic cheongsam shapes in pale pink and sky blue (the Pantone colours of the year) make for matriarch-worthy attire.
For online orders write to firstname.lastname@example.org or pay a visit to their atelier at:
16 Raffles Quay B1-36, Hong Leong Building, S-048581
+65 6223 4804
Open weekdays 12pm-7pm and selected weekends; operating as follows: Ready-to-wear, walk-ins accepted weekdays 12pm-2pm, all other times by appointment only, bespoke or customisation by appointment only.
Head over to Robinsons for a variety of CNY 2016 occasion wear. I love this red piece for comfortable day time attire.
Red dress by Allure, $199 from Robinsons
To up the ante in the evening, go all out in gold brocade and some cape-like tailoring.
Gold brocade dress, $499 by Soulbound, shop at Robinsons
We love this sleek, minimalist design from Elegente.
Silk qipao with ink painting, US$343 order online here
For a cheaper option which still looks chic, shop Intoxiquette’s selection of qipaos.
Cotton polyester mix dress, $42.90 from Intoxiquette, shop here
I love this nightingale blue dress for a classy, easy to wear design. The keyhole and embroidery add a very luxe, expensive-looking touch (no one would guess it was under $50)!
Cotton polyester mix dress, fully-lined, $42.90 from Intoxiquette, shop here
Divine Couture (if money is no object):
Head to bespoke dressmakers Divine for a truly tailor-made experience. Here’s one of my favourite creations of theirs:
By appointment only: Opening Hours:
Mon – Fri 12pm – 8pm, Sat 11am – 6pm
Closed on Sunday and Public Holidays
#04-03 Nagarathar Building, 5 Tank Road, Singapore 238061
+65 6235 7951 or 6235 7952
All About 8:
This label makes affordable and unique cheongsams, I love this electric blue piece for a statement-making entrance.
Embroidered polyester dress, $180.00 from Zalora