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[Infographic] 9 Pieces of Traditional Clothing You Have NEVER Worn (Part 2)


We recently published an infographic featuring 10 pieces of traditional clothing from around the world. We loved sharing the diversity of world clothing with our audience BUT there was one problem: There were simply too many pieces of clothing to feature in just one graphic! So, we went back and collected nine more pieces of traditional dress from around the world to share with our readers. View the infographic below…


9 pieces of clothing from around the world

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Siruname – Koto

  • Made using several layers of loosely-hanging cotton, this dress makes a woman’s frame look curvy and voluminous
  • Usually features an extra amount of loosely-fitted fabric around the belly while accentuating the hips, making the wearer appear bigger
  • Completed with a headpiece matching the color and style of the koto as well as a short cape worn over the shoulders and tied in front


Historical fact: Developed during the slavery period of Suriname under Dutch rule, this dress’ purpose was to protect women against their master’s sexual advances by making them appear unattractive


India – Sari

  • A long unstitched dress of 6 yards draped in a set pattern which exposes the mid-riff of its wearer
  • Fabrics, styles and colors used are as diverse as India itself
  • Worn with a blouse covering the upper body and a petticoat to tuck the pleats of the Sari into and hold it in place


Japan – Kimono

  • Usually consists of 12 individual pieces
  • The belt, of ‘Obi’, is used to tuck away excess clothing and to make it fit properly
  • Length of the sleeves indicates marital status (shorter = married, longer = unmarried)
  • Usually made of silk exclusively but cheaper materials are used for mass merchandise
  • The style and color worn varies depending on the occasion, age and marital status
  • While once a very common female outfit, it is now only used for festivities such as weddings and birthdays


Vietnam – Áo Dái

  • Covers the entire body from head to toe. It is famously described as ‘covering everything, but hiding nothing’
  • Mostly worn by women on special occasions such as weddings
  • It is made exclusively of silk, fits tightly, and flatters the body
  • Composed of 2 pieces that are split at the waist, making it easy to around move in


China – Cheongsam

  • A body-hugging one-piece dress created in 1920s Shanghai
  • Made of silk and cotton with many buttons and fine embroiderment
  • The male version is known as the changshan


Kasaya/Monastic – Buddhist robes

  • Comes in 2 different colors depending on the wearer’s religious orientation: Theravada Buddhists in Southeast Asia wear orange (saffron), Tibetan Buddhists wear maroon-colored robes
  • Made of very basic cotton to symbolize simplicity and detachment from materialism. This is also why monks shave their heads


Fun Fact: Probably the oldest piece of clothing still in fashion after 2,500 years


Bhutan – Gho

  • The mandatory national dress for men, this is a knee-length robe that is tied at the waist by a cloth belt
  • Made of white raw silk, cotton and polyester


Mongolia – Deel

  • A calf-length tunic traditionally made from cotton or wool for men and made from silk or brocade for women that usually comes in blue, olive or burgundy
  • The sash around the hip serves both to keep the one-piece in place and to create a large pocket in which items can be stored
  • Depending on the occasion, the deel comes either in a plain color or is decorated with elaborate silk embroiderment


Fun Fact: According to legend, the purpose of the wide, cup-shaped sleeves, also called hooves, is to make the Mongolian rider one with his horse


Middle-east – Kaftan

  • A robe made of wool, cashmere, silk or cotton reaching to the ankles and with long sleeves
  • Originating in Mesopotamia, it has since been worn in the region for several millennia
  • Donned by everyone from Ottoman Empire sultans, women in Maghreb countries and both men and women in modern Senegal, the Kaftan has many different styles and colors



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