There are more than 70 ethnics in Sabah. One of them is Bajau. The bajau’s wedding is very unique. Other than unique in their culture, the Bajau’s wedding also unique in their costume. The bridal couples enjoy royal status and this is truly shown from the most obvious colour in their wedding costume (yellow). The Bajau bride’s blouse or Badu Sipak has long extended sleeves which are slashed at the elbows, giving the blouse a soft flowing effect. The sleeve openings show off velvet inner sleeves of a darker contrasting colour. The front opening of the round-necked blouse is fastened by 14 or more pairs of gold buttons called betawi. The finishing touch to the blouse is Mandapun – a bib-like piece of cloth upon which pieces of gold leaf cut out in typical Bajau design is sewn. A hole the size of the wearer’s head is cut from the cloth so that it slips over easily.
The Badu Sipak is worn with a full-length sarong (olos berangkit). The design of the berangkit panel usually takes on the motif of a cotton plant in bloom (sumping kapas) and Rafflesia motif (sumping bogong). Both panels are bordered by zigzag stitching called karis-karis. The blouse is tucked into the sarong and then gathered at the sides to form pleats and tied around the waist with strip of cloth and also silver coin belt (ingkot pangkat). The bride’s hair is tied up into a bun (simboong) and decorated with a headpiece (sarimpak) shaped like a boat, and a two-pieced ornament. The dangling attachments to the sarimpak are called garigai. Other accompanying jewellery are gold bangles (gelang) worn on both arms, earrings (subang) and gold finger covers known as keku.
The Bajau bridegroom always wears a royal yellow badu sipak with extended sleeves slashed at the elbows. The shirt is high collared with gold buttons (betawi) in front. The trousers (seluar sama) are baggy and the waist is not sewn in to fit. A silver coin belt (ingkot pangkat) with a wider buckle is worn. The groom’s ingkot pangkat has a very interesting attachment called supu (ball shaped silver Bajau cigarette case). Beeswax is smoothed on the Bajau man’s moustache to keep it slick while Bajau women use beeswax as lip salve. The groom’s headpiece (podong) is a one-square meter piece of dastar cloth. Threads of green, red, yellow, orange, gold and white are woven to form floral patterns on the cloth. The shape of podong with a flap (tanjak) at the back resembles buffalo horns.