Sewing the slow way: a travel sarong [plus new video!]

Making on the move DIY sarong_editChris and I bid a fond, slightly sad, farewell to Sabah yesterday and the Sandakan jungle, and six hours and one bumpy three hour flight later we touched down in sultry Kuala Lumpur amidst a spectacular downpour. By the time we arrived at our hotel we just had energy to drag ourselves to Jalan Alor, the epicentre of delicious food in central KL, for satay skewers, tiger beer and a local delicacy called Marmite chicken; delicious crispy deep fried chicken pieces in a sticky Marmite sauce. Chris hates Marmite, and he ate most of it.

While I may have swapped junglescapes for cityscapes, Kuala Lumpur is a city I know very well and am extremely fond of. Today was spent revisiting some of my favourite spots, spotting familiar faces in my favourite city bookshop, and enjoying the first decent wifi we’ve had for about a week. Which has allowed me to finally upload my latest video!

I found a four storey fabric shop opposite my hotel in Kota Kinabalu, and came away with several metres of printed silks. Seeing as we’re going to be on the road for three months, which will include visiting such places as Tessuti in Melbourne and the Garment District in New York, I am having to pace myself with the old fabric shopping (my bag can only take so much!). Anyway, I decided to deploy two metres of beautiful blue/pink/purple digital print silk (a steal at £6) as a Malaysian style sarong. Sarongs out here are different to the beach coverups we’re used to in Europe, as they are a tube of fabric rather than a sheet, and they are worn more or less all over South East Asia. There are infinite ways to knot one, and they can be worn for all occasions from the casual  to the ceremonial. One of our jungle lodges even supplied them as mandatory evening wear!

I think you’ll agree that this colour scheme is a significant departure from my usual uniform of grey, navy and cream. What can I say, I’m in island mode. Before long I’ll be inserting humorous gifs into my posts, and then all hope will be lost.

island nials

What do you think?