Hong Kong Popstar Miriam Yeung wearing a Kwa on her own wedding day
Each color for a Kwa Qun was strictly confined to women of certain status in the past. For instance, only first wives had the right to wear a red kwa, while concubines wore pink or green ones.
Brides nowadays can wear wedding costumes in any colour they wish. For mothers-in-law, black Kwa's are still preferred. A black blouse and skirt are suitable for women over 60, while younger ones wear a black blouse and a red skirt.
Despite such differentiation, there are three main types of Kwa according to the decorating materials. One popular type of Kwa, which was introduced in the 1960s, is embellished with sequins and beads for a glittering effect.
Another type — the most luxurious and sophisticated one — is called “The King of Kwa's”. It is the most sumptuous because all sewing is done by hand. Real golden and silver thread is used to sew motifs of dragons, phoenixes and auspicious symbols. Motifs of dragons and phoenixes are regarded as symbols of prosperity and fortune.
The third type of kwa is a combination of the former types. It has some decorative beads and sequins together with embroidery in golden and silver thread. A special kind of kwa was worn by a woman on both her wedding and burial days. Some women own a kwa which is worn on the wedding day, and then when the owner dies, her corpse is dressed in the kwa again. The popularity of such kwa's has faded out already, however.