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For the late Mrs Wee Kim Wee, her final outfit  will be a light yellow cheongsam with blue flowers tailored for her in Shanghai.

Photo: The Business Times

In our humble opinion, that’s an outfit choice very befitting and symbolic of the late Mrs Wee whom we know is a cheongsam trendsetter.

Photo: The Straits Times

Cheongsams were often the official outfits of choice for the late Mrs Wee as she wore it to formal occasions as the former First Lady of Singapore. She wore cheongsams to greet politicians and royalties from around the world. Her style thus became synonymous with this Chinese dress.

Photo: The Straits Times

The cheongsam (or long dress) was created in Shanghai in the 1920s. Being a cosmopolitan city, Shanghai was the perfect place for the cheongsam to be born. Seen as an outfit that went against traditional values that seemingly stifled China’s progress in the Republican period, the cheongsam was representative of the changing and modern beliefs as it stood as an alternative to the traditional robes that women wore.

Photo: The Straits Times

As times and tastes evolved, the silhouette of the cheongsam gradually became more form-fitting and the hemline got higher, becoming the form we know and love today. Cheongsams come in a variety of fabrics, but most popular materials include silk, satin, and lace. Cheongsams today continue to be the defining dress that exudes classic, timeless style for women.

Photo: The Straits Times

As an homage to the affable and fashionable Mrs Wee Kim Wee, here are six different modern takes on the cheongsam so that you can look effortlessly chic and regal.