United Arab Emirates

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UAE avaThere are many speculations about Emirati traditional clothing these days. In particular, about local women wearing hijabs, special burqa masks, and other headwear that covers the face. But actually, there is a good reason for such accessories, just as for some of the men’s clothing articles. For instance, do you know the second functional reason to use an agal, special cord that holds the male headscarf in place? It is exciting how every part of Emirati national costume has its purpose and cultural background.

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Shemagh avaWe would like to share with you a nice tutorial on how to wear the Emirati shemagh. In the video, you’ll see that the tutor uses the “Shall Omani” (Omani headwrap) rather than the Emirati shemagh. That’s because the fabric of shall Omani is thicker and so the details are better visible. But you can do the same with your shemagh or ghutra. The shemagh (also called keffiyeh, kufiya, ghutrah, hattah, mashadah, chafiye, dastmal yazdi, or cemedani) is the traditional Middle Eastern men’s headdress.

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Al Sadu avaAl Sadu is a traditional weaving technique in the United Arab Emirates. Just as many other folk crafts around the world, Al Sadu is close to disappearance. Fewer and fewer Emirati women practice it and teach the youth how to weave using Al Sadu technique. But still, Bedouins are a rare ethnic group that thoroughly keeps the old traditions. Hopefully, this craft will also survive. But if not, use this chance to watch the traditional Bedouin weaving and learn more about it, while you still can.

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Talli embroidery avaEmbroidery is a very widespread craft – craftsmen and craftswomen from most of the countries around the world practice it. But the traditional talli embroidery of the UAE differs much from any other embroidery technique. Emirati women have kept this tradition till today and continue to popularize it in the modern world – you can find fashionable accessories adorned with handmade talli in many European expensive boutiques. You might not even realize that your purse or belt is embellished with talli embroidery.

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emirati couple avaEmirati men and women still keep their traditions in the 21st century. They wear the national outfits of the United Arab Emirates every day due to the tradition, religious law, and climate of the country. When Emiratis go abroad they usually prefer to wear the western-style clothing but at home, most of them continue to use kanduras, gutrahs, and abayas. The clothing tradition is very important in the UAE, so tourists should remember about that and respect it, even if we’re not used to wearing such clothes.