Songket, Keringkam & Innovative Product

Event Lead to Establishment of Songket & Keringkam Gallery

  1. Sarawak Heritage Innovation was established by Datu Amar Hajah Jumaani
  2. “Malam Persona Songket & Keringkam Anatarabangsa2018”
  3. Lembaran Emas2019

His Majesty the Raja Permaisuri Agong & advised the state government to visit Pahang Prison. Kunjungan ke Penjara Pahang – sebagai penanda aras.

  1. Establishment of Songket dan Keringkam Gallery.
  • The establishment of Songket and Keringkam gallery began on 26 June 2019 during a courtesy call on Her Majesty the Raja Permaisuri Agong during the Golden Sheet 2019. The Sarawak Government’s efforts in empowering the tourism industry have unearthed traditional traditions, especially Songket Sarawak through Sarawak Heritage Innovation initiated by YABhg. Datuk Amar Hajah Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Haji Bujang and also the International Songket & Keringkam Persona Night 2018. Also improved by the efforts of OKSHE under the guidance of Datu Dr Sabariah Putit in research on songket and keringkam with UNIMAS, IPG and the Sarawak community.
  • During the Lembaran Emas 2019 courtesy call, a meeting between His Majesty the Raja Permaisuri Agong, Datuk Amar Hajah Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Haji Bujang and also Datu Dr Sabariah Putit was the starting point for the establishment of Songket and Keringkam Gallery. Her Majesty the Raja Permaisuri Agong ordered the Sarawak State Government to work with the Sarawak State Prisons to develop the songket industry with the existing community in Sarawak to become the Royal Pahang Weaving Center as a benchmark.
  • As a result of the visit to the Royal Pahang Weaving Center, it was decided that Sarawak should have a special gallery for Songket and Keringkam as a community platform to market and display songket weaving and keringkam embroidery. On 6 March 2020, Songket & Keringkam Gallery was inaugurated by the YAB Chief Minister of Sarawak, as a place to learn and appreciate the history and heritage of Songket and Keringkam in Sarawak so as not to be lost to time. In addition, marketing and sales for products in Songket and Keringkam Gallery are managed by Centex Commercial Services Sdn Bhd and The Marketing Heaven.
  • This gallery has become a reality due to the cooperation of various agencies such as the Administration Unit, Chief Minister’s Department, Sarawak Works Department, Sarawak State Prison Department, Puncak Borneo Prison, SMA, UNIMAS, IPG, CENTEXS, CENTEXS Commercial and special thanks to YAB Chief Minister of Sarawak above his support in efforts to elevate Songket and Keringkam in Sarawak.

History of Songket Melayu Sarawak

Songket Melayu is synonym with the Sarawakian Malay community as the complement traditional couture for Berketul, Engagement, Wedding and many other ceremonies. There are evidences that Songket existed since the 16th Century in the region, as an official attire for the noble Malays. Songket Melayu are woven by people who live in coastal areas that are exposed to external influences.

Songket Melayu Sarawak is known for the usage of famous gold thread and the fine woven and perfected the masterpiece made by the weaver. Most Malays adapted and used their status as Muslims in the philosophy of art and culture. The power of Songket Melayu Sarawak weaving technique is complicated and takes a relatively long time. The more difficult to distinguish the inside and outside of the motif on the fabric, the more complicated its manufacture and the more gold thread, the higher its value.

Traditionally, women Melayu Sarawak will pair Songket with keringkam, while boys will wear Songket as “sampin ‘(cloth worn by Malay men around the abdomen, to close the abdomen to the knee or just below it) or ‘sabok duajari‘ as an accessory to the shirt Melayu and songkok. In creating motive Songket, Malayu people of Sarawak remained loyal to the Islamic belief in them and concentrate most of their inspiration around the cosmos and flora. Motif kain merah raba corak berturus has been woven with the traditional style of Sarawak and common Songket’s motive in Sarawak and generally western Borneo. The head of the cloth is decorated with a motif of yam leaves. The body of the cloth is full of drizzle motifs.

Whereas, if the female bride wears an elephant olen, the groom will use hard turban, robe-clad Malay sides and front of it. Typically, the groom will wear a headband with folding “Bugis Tak Balik” with Baju Melayu and bersabok kain Songket or woven fabric.

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