The patadyong is a pre-Spanish clothing item or loose skirt worn by Filipino women particularly in the lowland regions of the Visayas. In terms of function, it is similar to the “sarong” or “malong” used in Mindanao in southern Philippinesa nd Indonesia. But instead of the batik patterns, the patadyong has a checkered, colorful design or patterns.
Like the malong, the patadyong has a variety of uses. Primarily, women used it as a tucked-in skirt topped by a kimona (thin cotton blouse). Women in the countryside or rural areas wear or used the patadyong as a sort of kerchief, shawl or even to shade or cover themselves from prying eyes. In bygone days when washing or bathing in rivers were commonplace, women hold a piece or one end of the patadyong with their teeth or free hand, while soaping and cleaning their body with another hand. It may looked clumsy but it works by providing a bit of privacy.
Today wearing patadyong is often limited or seen in folkloric performances and dances, and is considered as more of a costume than everyday wear like it used to be.
Long live Philippine clothing traditions!