Longyis with pockets hit the racks
WHO decided longyis couldn’t have pockets?
Whoever it was, that decision has been rendered void by the folks at Cici, who launched a new collection of traditional outfits featuring pockets over the weekend. At the release on July 31, the store at Hledan Gamone Pwint shopping centre buzzed as women browsed the options.
“The inspiration for pocket longyis actually comes from menswear,” says Su Wai Yee, CEO of Cici. She said she realised that men’s clothing almost always features pockets, making it easier for them to function in the modern world without having their hands full.
“In the age where everyone is attached to their smartphone, the practicalities of having one or more pockets in our clothing have become even more relevant,” she said.
She added that Western fashions feature convenient pockets inside sleek sportcoats. Even the traditional paso, or men’s longyi, is tied in such a fashion that enables men to slip a wallet in their waist or tuck a phone into its folds.
Women, however, do not have that luxury. The discrepancy inspired Su Wai Yee to design a women’s longyi, or htamein, with pockets. For months, her team developed a variety of designs, trying to overcome the challenges of htameins, which are customarily tied tightly around the waist.
The five that made the cut, nicknamed for the days of the working week, are marketed toward a new generation of working Myanmar women.
“We try to appeal to urban Myanmar women who are out and about at work,” Su Wai Yee said. “We believe that these women would most benefit from the practical aspect of wearing longyis with pockets.”
During the launch, excited customers bought up nearly 50 percent of Cici’s inventory. A particularly popular service offered free monogram embroidery to those who purchased a longyi and blouse set.
The pocket longyis range in price from K22,000 to K24,000, while tops list at K15,000 to K18,000. The store aims to be a ready-to-wear fashion label, so personalised tailoring services are not currently available.
“The addition of pockets helps Yangon’s leading ladies reinvent the way they wear their longyis, now adding a touch of modern glamour, not to mention the functionality, to the grace and aesthetics of this wellloved traditional wear,” Su Wai Yee said.
Cici is designed and made in Myanmar. Its flagship store opened on Shinsawpu Road in March last year, and currently sells its outfits at Bang Bang stores as well as over online platforms including its Facebook page, MyStylo, and shop.com.
Cici, a women’s clothing store, launched a new line of pocket longyis on July 31.
The launch event was extremely popular, with nearly 50 percent of Cici’s pocket longyi inventory flying off the shelves.
Su Wai Yee, third from right, is the CEO of Cicis. She said the idea of pocket longyis was inspired by menswear, such as sportcoats.
Customers can oder online or at one of Cici’s two locations.
Su Wai Yee models one of the styles, with her smartphone tucked into the top pocket.
The longyis are ready-to-wear and available in five variations.
Customers gather outside Cici’s Hledan Gamone Pwint location.