In conjunction with next year’s Visit Perak Year, Perak Tourism Association together with UiTM Perak and Tourism Perak Management held a design competition where contestants designed the best souvenirs to represent Perak.

During the prize giving ceremony on October 1, state EXCO for Tourism, Arts and Culture, Communications and Multimedia, Dato’ Nolee Ashilin Mohammed Radzi was impressed with the results.

“While Perak is known best for our food and places to visit, we aren’t doing so well in the souvenir sections. In fact, I admit having difficulties to find souvenirs for my guests who come here for a visit. Seeing what has been made by the participants, I can predict we will produce the best souvenirs for both local and international tourists,” said Nolee in her opening remarks.

For Siti Ermi Syahirah Abdul Jamil, 35, and her daughter Syasmina Natasha, 12, they took it as an opportunity to expand their creative skills and create not one but four types of souvenirs with their Kirigami: a Japanese art form that includes cutting and folding papers which won first prize in the Open Category, “It started as a project I did for my studies but slowly, I saw the potential and even my daughter was eager to be part of it. Not only did I get to design and do what I love, I also get to spend time with her,” said the busy mother who is studying in the field of art at UiTM Perak.

Siti Ermi’s Kirigami bookmarks not only charmed Dato’ Nolee but also the president of Malaysian Association of Hotel, Perak Chapter, Maggie Ong who attended the the event, “The design itself is very unique and intricate. It has much potential and I am definitely looking forward to see these at souvenirs stores next year,” said Maggie.

Aside from Kirigami bookmarks, the duo also make bags, Origami bookmarks and fridge magnets. Among other souvenirs on display at the event were chocolates, clocks, water bottles, puzzles and more.

Ili Aqilah