SPLURGE: Melaka is famous for its beautiful handmade nyonya beaded slippers or kasut manik. These slip-on heels are decorated with tiny beads, individually sewn on to create colourful and intricate designs of flowers, birds, butterflies and such. The fine workmanship and painstaking effort that go into each shoe are the hallmarks of the highly accomplished skills of its maker.
Vintage beaded slippers can cost a few hundred Ringgits, and into the thousands, because the Peranakan glass beads used are no longer available. The authentic versions use tiny seed beads that are sewn on bead by bead, whereas the modern ones use larger and shinier bead versions.
DEAL: It may not be authentic nyonya heritage, but Melaka wooden clogs, or terompah, are typically Malaysian. The authentic ones are simple in design – with a slight heel and a base made of sturdy wood with a piece of red plastic strapped across the top. The clogs used to be worn around the house, especially the kitchen area. These days, souvenir shops sell clogs with hand painted designs. It’s possible to get smaller, fridge-magnet versions of this footwear.