Well, I’m just back from a short spring vacation: 10 days in Malaysia and 10 days in the South Pacific. A long way to travel for a short time. I will share textile adventures with you as soon as I Photoshop some pictures. This vacation I didn’t concentrate on buying vintage textiles as I have a very large collection of vintage batiks, ikats and songhets from trips to Indonesia. Instead I hit the markets for clothing for me and for gifts. Nothing can beat the selection (and prices) of markets. In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia the Central Market was the place to bargain and was conveniently located a 20 minute ride on the city “hop on” free bus from our hotel. Although I had vowed to purchase only for others, I couldn’t resist purchasing a “few essentials” for myself. Also visited were KL’s Chinatown markets and the various markets of Penang (an island off the coast which we also visited). My only restraint was the thought of the over-weight baggage fees for the return flights. For caftans, scarves, tee-shirts and batik fabrics the markets could not have been better. However, for shoes, that is another matter.
If you have followed this blog you know I really, really love shoes. The selection of gorgeous, reasonably priced, footwear is astounding in Malaysia. So a trip to the large city malls was in order. Store after store of shoes, sandals, flip-flops, boots of every description. And talk about bling!! Crystals and rhinestones are the usual embellishments in Asia, but this was simply over the top. It was as if a thousand workers manned with those “bedazzler” tools went berserk and decorated every surface of silk blouses, scarves, tee-shirts and, wait for it, shoes. Displays of jeweled shoes sent light beams across the stores. Encrusted flip flops called my name. Unfortunately I am not expecting an invitation to a royal wedding and here in Santa Fe they might be considered over the top. Therefore I begrudgingly settled for a pair of coral and tan leather loafers and one pair of lovely sea-foam green suede flip flops with suede flowers.
The great misfortune of this trip was missing the Malaysia International Shoe Festival. I cannot even begin to imagine what wonders one might have encountered. But rescheduling our home reservations seemed excessive (besides, I was outvoted).