SINGAPORE – Red, white, quirky patterns and matching outfits.
Ministers and MPs arrived at the Padang on Friday (Aug 9) to celebrate the nation’s 54th birthday in intricate outfits, many of which were from Singapore designers and labels, or had strong Singaporean influences.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong sported a red-and-white shirt with a motif of the Vanda Miss Joaquim orchid, Singapore’s national flower.
Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat and Environment and Water Resources Minister Masagos Zulkifli had a “twinning” day, as they wore matching shirts designed by batik artist Ika Zahri Sarkasi. Their shirts feature bumboats and local architecture.
Mr Ika Zahri and his father Sarkasi Said are well-known batik artists. The latter designed shirts for 10 MPs to wear to last year’s National Day Parade.
Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Culture, Community and Youth Baey Yam Keng wore a white shirt with a red outline of Singapore island, designed by Lasalle graduate Ng Jia Min.
MP for Sembawang GRC Vikram Nair, Bukit Timah GRC MP Christopher de Souza and Senior Minister of State for Communications and Information and Culture, Community and Youth Sim Ann wore outfits from home-grown designer Ying the Label.
Mr Nair opted for a button-down white shirt with a diagonal string of red orchids, while Mr de Souza was clad in a white shirt with a red lion in its centre. Ms Sim donned a red dress with a white collar.
Patterns, some intricate, were also popular among many MPs.
Senior Minister of State for the Environment and Water Resources Amy Khor sported a dress by local designer Anne Tan that had a white skirt and a red bodice with embroidered floral designs.
Tanjong Pagar GRC MP Joan Pereira was decked out in a red baju kebaya with floral details.
Second Minister for Education and Finance Indranee Rajah wore a champagne-coloured blouse with a Mandarin collar and rose embroidery.
Jalan Besar GRC MP Lily Neo was clad in an intricate red dress with embroidery and sequins that she designed herself.
Like last year, MacPherson MP Tin Pei Ling wore a capelet but swapped 2018’s white capelet with a cheongsam-inspired collar for a red one with white floral prints.
Some MPs highlighted accessories by home-grown designers and labels.
Culture, Community and Youth Minister Grace Fu carried a red clutch designed by social enterprise The Looms Workshop.
Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Home Affairs Sun Xueling donned a red scarf from Binary Style, while Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education Low Yen Ling wore an orchid ring from In-trigue.
Dr Khor, Ms Pereira, Manpower Minister Josephine Teo and Jalan Besar GRC MP Denise Phua wore Kanyeka earrings and brooches in the shape of five stars and a crescent.
Some MPs kept things simple.
MPs from the Workers’ Party donned shirts in various shades of red, for instance.