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“I can make a songkok in one hour”

This post is also available in: Malay

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Haja Mohideen, second generation songkok maker

Kedai Songkok Osm Mohd Shariff, Lebuh King, Penang. 2012

Under the tutelage of his father, Haja Mohideen made his first songkok when he was only 12. His father started making songkok in the tiny shop measuring six feet by 12 feet in 1933, built into an alcove next to the Nagore Durgha Shrine at the entrance of Penang’s Little India. When his father retired in 1975, Haja Mohideen carried on single-handedly until his son-in-law, Abdul Kader, joined him.

Through the years, he has made songkok for people from all walks of life, from royalty to the common man. He also enjoys the patronage of various uniformed organisations, filling their bulk orders on his 60-year-old sewing machine. It is during Ramadan when Muslims are begin preparing for Hari Raya Aidilfitri that he is at his busiest and he happier than ever that Kader is by his side.

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