Finally, the Trung Sisters

Our new Trung Sisters costume, which we published yesterday, has been a long time coming. People have been asking us for a DIY Trung Sisters costume since our very first year of operation. If you grew up in a Viet community, you’re of course familiar with the seamstress-made costumes sometimes worn on Hai Ba Trung Day. But, we were asked, what about something that looks more ancient? What about something that looks like the Dong Son culture, and the pictures in the illustrated history books?

We came up with three basic requirements for the costume:

1. That it look like the ancient Viet style;
2. That it be recognizable as the Trung Sisters;
3. That it be, like all our costumes, easy to put together with no sewing required.

And this is the result:


With the swords, the feathers, and the bright yellow jackets and sashes, everyone will immediately know you’re supposed to be the Trung Sisters. Now all you need to do is wrangle a couple of elephants to ride on…

The statue of Hai Ba Trung in the Suoi Tien Amusement Park, which is located at the 9th District, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

The statue of Hai Ba Trung in the Suoi Tien Amusement Park, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Beyond the legend: If you’re doing research on ancient Vietnam, or if you’re just a history geek, here are some useful English-language scholarly articles to get you started.

If you understand Vietnamese, the documentary Di tim trang phuc Viet (In Search of Vietnamese Costumes) is a treasure trove. You can watch all 24 episodes on YouTube. Here’s the first one: