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Typical Muslim Maranaw

The attire of Maranaw prince and
“Maranaw” means ‘people

of the lake’, referring to lands

surrounding Lake Lanao.
Descending from Muslim Malays,
the royal families within this tribe
are a mix of Arab, Malaysian and
Chinese ancestry.
They are famous for their artwork,
sophisticated weaving, wood and
metal craft, and their epic

Folk dance clothing tells a

lot about the culture and traditions
of a country. In the Philippines,
there is a dance called “singkil”
that shows us the traditional
costumes of the Maranao people and their local folklore. It is a tiny part of the Filipino clothing
culture but nevertheless, a very significant, colorful, and bright part.

The costumes used during the singkil are among the most colorful and intricate Maranao attires.

The Maranao Princess costume is made from silk or cotton. The garments are ornate, decorated
with metallic threads embroidery, sequins, pearls, and long beads. The dancer also has intricate
jewelry, like bangles and etc. Her headdress is a work of art. It is made of silk and brass,
decorated with tassels and dangling beads.

She is wearing colorful Arab shoes. The lead dancer uses fans as accessories – made from
bamboo and decorated with beautiful appliques.

The malong is traditionally used as a garment by numerous tribes

in the Southern Philippines and the Sulu Archipelago.
Its origin is from the ethnical group of Maranao,
Maguindanao and T’boli located in Mindanao.
Handwoven malongs are made by the weavers on a backstrap loom.
Very rare malong designs and styles can indicate the village in which the malong was made.
Handwoven malongs, which are costly- made of cotton and silk,
are likely to be used only at social functions, to display
the social and economic status of the wearer.
But a malong in royal colours is worn only by Maranao men and women of royal status.
The malong can also function as a skirt for both men and women,
a dress, a blanket, a bedsheet, a hammock, a prayer mat, and other purposes.

The Maranao Prince outfit consists of a colorful long silk shirt adorned with metallic golden
threads, matching long pants with similar decorations, an enormous metal necklace, and a
knotted cap decorated with exquisite gold embroidery.