It’s officially our wedding week! Here are some of our engagement photos wearing a barong and a terno/filipiniana dress!
One way I wanted to incorporate Filipino culture during our wedding week was to wear traditional Filipino clothing for half our engagement photos. We bought both our traditional Filipino attire when we visited the Philippines in 2019. I also wanted to share a brief history of the Barong and the Terno.
If you haven’t heard of a Barong before, the Baro ng Tagalog or Barong Tagalog, is a long-sleeved formal shirt traditionally made of pina fabric (pineapple leaf), Jusi, or Abaca. Barongs are worn on special occasions, like weddings, fiestas, and other formal events.
Barongs have evolved over the last 400 years. The history of Barongs can be traced back to the pre-colonial era/before Spanish colonization. The men of Luzon wore a baro, which is a collarless shirt that extended below the waist. During the Spanish era, the Barong was used to distinguish Filipinos, or the Indios, from the ruling Spanish class. The Spanish colonizers forced native Filipinos to keep their barongs transparent and untucked to ensure they weren’t carrying weapons or stealing.
Hand woven embroidery rose into fashion in the 19th century. And as the Filipino Nationalist fought the Spanish and the Americans for independence, the Barong Tagalog emerged with ruffled collars, unique designs, and various colors. From the 1950s-1970s, the presidents of the Philippines wore barongs in official and personal occasions.
The Filipiniana/ Terno
A Filipiniana or a Terno isone of the traditional dresses worn by Filipinas or Filipino women that has evolved from the pre-colonial period as well as Spanish and American colonization.
The Filipiniana can trace its origins to the Baro’t Saya – a loose fitting ensemble of a shirt, blouse, and elaborate skirt was worn by women before the Spanish colonial period (the Philippines was a Spanish colony for 300 years). In the 1890s and during the Spanish era, the Maria Clara dress emerged with a pineapple fiber blouse called a camisa as well as an opaque tapis overskirt.
At the end of the 19th century, the Traje de Mestiza came into fashion as the Philippines became a US colony. The Trahe de Mestiza was worn by the aristocratic members of society and by women of mix Filipino and foreign ancestry.
In the 1920s, the dress evolved again and replaced the wide sleeves with butterfly sleeves. The Terno (Filipiniana dress) is comprised with a matching blouse and skirt. The sheer fabric of Filipinianas is made by using piña (pineapple fibers) or Jusi (silk organza) fabric. The piña fabric is a natural fiber sourced from the Philippine Red Pineapple leaves.
I hope you enjoyed this little bit of history on traditional Filipino clothing!
Our engagement and wedding photographer is Saskia Potter.
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Thank you for reading!