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Unisex Short Sleeved Barong (Kontra Katatagan)

Unisex Short Sleeved Barong (Kontra Katatagan)




This Unisex Short Sleeved Barong with open lapels boasts epic batok embroidery pattern, meaning the design is not only in the front area, but it is also across the back and the sleeves. And the meaning of this embroidery... are you ready for VINTA storytime? 

This embroidery design features the Dita Tree (Alstonia scholaris). This tree is native to the Philippine archipelago and can be found in Cagayan, northern Luzon, to Palawan and Mindanao, and in most or all islands and provinces, in primary and secondary forests at low and medium altitudes. Its leaves and bark have an enormous amount of medicinal and practical uses. In the Philippines, the bark is regarded as a remedy for fevers, chronic diarrhea, dysentery. Earlier Spanish records report the Dita bark alkaloid was used in hospitals as a quinine substitute.

In our "Kultura ng Pagdidiwata" (Harmony with the Deities, Creative Forces of Nature and Ancestral Spirits), this tree is believed to be “Puno ng Demonyo” because this is where bad spirits and engkantos live.

In 2009, 37 people, made up of 7 families, including a 2-week old baby in Quezon City, climbed a large Dita Tree and were saved from the 40 ft flood waters that rose from Typhoon Ondoy. The "Puno ng Demonyo" has since been rebranded as "Puno ng Buhay".

We use this tree as symbol in a couple of ways; one, as a symbol for the value of planting trees; and two, as a metaphor for Filipino resilience in the face of adversity-- and further, how the Philippines is a nation of resilience. But we put Kontra (anti) with Katatagan (resilience) in quotations to challenge it. In this design, we want to address the problem with our "resilience" -- and that is the speed by which we transform trauma into acceptance, and the faithful platitudes that has turned toxic positivity into Filipino custom.

The matching Barong Shorts Are sold separately here. 

Each Unisex Short Sleeved Barong is handcrafted by the VINTA Gallery team in our atelier in the Philippines. 


Price is in USD, which includes standard shipping within Canada and the US. This item ships out of Toronto. Additional shipping rates are available; expedited shipping and insurance coverage have an added fee. You will be able to choose your preferred shipping option at check out. Read our full shipping details here.


All sales are FINAL. Please refer to our exchange policy details here.

Please check your sizing carefully; size chart is below. Learn how to take your measurements here.

Material and Care Instructions:

This barong is made of jusi (silk / polyester blend) 
- Spot or fully hand wash with mild soap, do not wring. Dry flat
not in direct sun. Dry clean only when absolutely necessary, to avoid drying out the silk (this causes the fabric to break and tear). Steaming will cause crinkles, follow with iron on low to medium heat (silk setting).


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