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Journey of the Barong Tagalog, Spanish Colonial Philippines Part 14: the Baro Cerrada

Baro cerrada translates to “closed garment”, which referred to this barong’s closed collar and neck and its hidden or covered front opening. This version of the barong was worn during the 19th and 20th centuries.

 Photo of an early 19th century portrait painting of a man in his striped baro cerrada version of the Barong Tagalog. From Visitacion R. de la Torre’s The Barong Tagalog: The Philippines’ National Wear (1986).

Photo of an early 19th century portrait painting of a man in his striped baro cerrada version of the Barong Tagalog. The front opening is closed all the way up to the neck. No fastening devices are visible. There is embroidery around the front opening and a decorative round embroidery design at the bottom of the opening. This is an early, smaller version of the well-known U-shaped embroidery on barongs. There is embroidered lace on the collar and cuffs. From Visitacion R. de la Torre’s The Barong Tagalog: The Philippines’ National Wear (1986).

A middle to late 19th century photo of a mestizo merchant in his baro cerrada version of a barong probably made of abaca. From de la Torre’s The Barong Tagalog.

A middle to late 19th century photo of a mestizo merchant in his baro cerrada version of a barong probably made of abaca. The front opening is closed all the way up to the neck and covered by another piece of striped fabric. He wears a European hat, slacks, leather dress shoes and carries an umbrella. From de la Torre’s The Barong Tagalog.

 A contemporary photo of a 19th century Barong Tagalog of an illustrado and his salakot on a chair. From Lourdes R. Montinola’s book Piña (1991).

A contemporary photo of a 19th century Barong Tagalog of an illustrado and his salakot on a chair. This is a striped baro cerrada with a hidden front opening fastened all the way to the neck. Like the first image, this barong has embroidery around the front opening in a U-shape. It has a standing Elizabethan collar, and is likely made of piña or a piña blend. From Lourdes R. Montinola’s book Piña (1991).