Asia

Infographic avaA lot of people around the world consider Korean traditional costume called “hanbok” to be very elegant and good-looking. Its design is unique and never gets old-fashioned. But what do we really know about the national attire of Korea? Here are some infographics to help you learn a little more about these beautiful outfits and their history. How old is hanbok? What was the difference between high-class and low-class hanbok designs? Was women’s hanbok really invented for comfortable breastfeeding? Is a modern hanbok much different from an authentic one?

Korean hanbok avaA lot of countries and ethnic groups around the world work hard to preserve their clothing traditions. In the latest years, it has become fashionable to make modern replicas of authentic garments, very close to the original look. But Koreans chose another path – they modify their traditions to the modern fashion, add contemporary accents and features to the authentic garments. So, Korean folk dress didn’t freeze in time but continued to develop and change year after year. It helped Korean national costume to remain in use, while many other ethnic garments are left only in museum collections.

Umbrella avaKorean folk fashion has one particular accessory that can easily catch your attention. It is a delicate women’s parasol made from bamboo and paper. Who would have believed that a paper umbrella can protect you from the rain?! But Koreans learned how to make these umbrellas functional and pretty at the same time. These so-called “jiusan” parasols even turned into status and ceremonial accessories, beautiful in their sophistication.

Hanji avaThe hanji paper is a very common material in Korean traditional clothing culture. They make a lot of things out of it – clothes, shoes, handbags, parasols, jewelry, toys, hand fans, décor and household items, etc. This material is natural, easy to work with, and rather durable (at least for paper). It even has some water-resistant properties. Korean folk outfits and accessories made from hanji look exotic and cute. Besides, it’s hard to tell that they consist of paper.

hanbok avaIt is said that the national costume of Korea – the hanbok – appeared during the famous Three Kingdoms period. But, of course, every dynasty had their own fashion trends, tastes, and clothing traditions. So the hanbok was changing profoundly during the last 2,000 years. Let’s find out what changes did it undergo and what fashion tendencies were there during the Baekje, Goguryeo, and Silla Kingdoms of Korea.

hanbok avaKorean traditional attire, the hanbok, have been used in Korea for about 2,000 years. It has changed, of course, during these centuries. But even today, the hanbok looks gorgeous and delicate. All those years ago, this costume was just a day-to-day outfit for local tribes. Several years ago, a hanbok became the latest fad in the world’s fashion industry – many designers still try to use the airiness and sophistication of hanbok’s shapes in their modern creations.

Korean embroidery avaThe traditional Korean embroidery is extraordinary. Let’s look at these beautiful patterns and designs with Korean Master Embroider Lee Jung-sook. She is a well-known craftswoman, who organizes exhibitions of her works in Korea and abroad. And she made it her global goal to preserve and multiply Korean cultural heritage. This woman can be an example for everybody how to love the culture and tradition of your country and how to popularize folk crafts in the modern world.

binyeo avaIntricate Korean folk hair accessories catch your eye at once. The most beautiful and delicate of them were used by the royalty and wealthy noblewomen from Korean royal court. And what’s interesting and exciting about them is that each of Korean traditional hair accessories had a special meaning – they weren’t just pretty baubles. But you should see them for yourself to understand the real value and beauty of those accessories.

Korean hanbok avaKorean traditional costume called “hanbok” is pretty simple to put on. But some people face difficulties regarding the bow in the front of the garment. And sure, native Koreans know some tips that help them look perfect in hanbok. We would really like to share this knowledge with you. Also, you’ll see what to wear with hanbok in winter to feel warm and cozy.

A ZTraditional pieces of the male and female national costumes in Korea: ayam, ayngsam, baji, beoseon, binyeo, bokgeon, cheupji, cheolick, chima, chima jeogori, danghye, dangui, dansokgot, darisokgot, deot jeogori, dongjeong, durumagi, gache, gat, gil, git, gojengi, gongbok, goreum, gulle, gun, gunbok, gwanbok, hanbok, heoritti, hogeon, hwal-ot, hwangpo, jebok, jeogori, jeokui, jeonbok, jobok, jokduri, jokki, joseon-oth, juchaui, jumagui, jungchimak, juui, kkachi durumagi, kunghye, magoja, magwae, myeonbok, norigae, obangjang durumagi, onhye, po, ramie, sang, sangbok, sangtu, seolbim, sokchima, soksokgot, sonjjang, wonsam, and yungbok.

ramie avaTraditional Korean summer clothing is often made from ramie cloth. It is similar to linen by its qualities and fits perfectly in warm and humid climates. Many Asian countries (Japan, China, Indonesia, India, Korea, etc.) used ramie for centuries to make ordinary and luxury outfits. But the craft of producing this “live textile” requires large amounts of time and hard labor. You should definitely see for yourself.

Korean dress avaLearn how to wear the Korean female winter clothing step by step. The outfit includes underwear, the main garment, outerwear, and accessories. You’ll find here all the tricks you need to know. How to look striking in Korean folk dress? Easy, just follow the instructions below.

Kyrgyz avaThe national costume of Kyrgyzstan hasn’t changed much for the last almost 700 years. A lot of garments remain practically identical to vintage items. But, of course, slight changes occur with time – mainly in decoration and details of the outfit or sometimes in the cut. For instance, modern Kyrgyz folk dresses can be shorter and more fitting, while the traditional embroidery patterns are still used to embellish them. But let’s look at 5 curious features of Kyrgyz national male and female costume.

elechek avaKyrgyz folk headpieces are remarkable accessories. There are 3 main types of female headgear: a tebetei (fur hat), a topu (skull-cap), and an elechek or kalyak (long piece of cloth wound around the head like a turban). Let’s look in detail at these traditional Kyrgyz headwear items worn by women. Particularly, we’ll learn a lot about the elechek – this folk female headdress is perhaps the most charming and useful article of clothing in Kyrgyzstan and it reflects the local cultural peculiarities perfectly.

Kyrgyz costume avaKyrgyz traditional outfits not only look pretty but also are very comfy to wear. Actually, that’s the main feature of Kyrgyz folk dress because these are nomadic people who originally spent much of their time on horseback. Today, the lifestyle of modern Kyrgyz people is a bit different, especially for city-dwellers, but the traditional clothing remains the same – loose, comfortable, multilayered, and with minimal decor.

suea pat2 avaThe Laotian women’s attire is lovely and feminine. The most interesting thing about it is probably the hairdo and hair accessories, but we’ll get to this topic in future paragraphs. In this post, let’s take a look at the traditional shirt worn by Lao ladies. It is called a “suea pat” or “suea pai”, has a rather distinctive Asian design, and is used today as ceremonial wear. By the way, you can tell the ethnic origin of a woman by her suea pat, if it’s tailored properly, of course.

salong avaLao men dress in the national outfit for various special occasions, like weddings, national celebrations, ceremonies, contests, and similar events. The male costume of Laos looks charming. It can be as colorful and bright as women’s attire, with plenty of decorative elements and accessories – forget about black pants and a white shirt! Lao folk trousers called “salong” can be pink, green, blue, red, burgundy, yellow, brown, etc. Besides, the design of these traditional pants is very interesting and Asian-style.

Sinh avaThe Lao traditional skirt called “sinh” is a wrap-around tube of skirt made of silk, cotton & silk, or cotton only. Most of the sinhs have special patterns woven directly into the fabric or embroidered on it. They reflect the culture and beliefs of different ethnic communities. There isn’t much information about this traditional garment because people did not record the very beginning of this folk skirt’s history. But let’s try to find out as much as possible about it.

A ZTraditional pieces of the male and female national costumes in Malaysia: baju batik, batik, baju kebarung, baju kebaya, baju kurung, baju kurung kedah, baju melayu, ikat, kain, kemban, sampin, sarong, selendang, songket, songkok, tanjak, tengkolok, tudung.

malay couple avaThere is no single national costume in Malaysia. But all of the outfits can be divided into several main categories: Malay, Chinese, Indian, and Aboriginal dress (Orang Asli). Malaysia is a country where different cultures mix and intertwine. But the more interesting it is to learn about the clothing traditions of Malaysia. There is a wide variety of folk costumes used by the locals and the descendants of the immigrants from other countries: from simple outfits made of the natural materials to intricate attires adorned with complicated needlework.

jewels avaIn Buryat traditional culture, jewelry pieces play a very important role. A women’s folk costume can’t go without at least several silver&coral jewels; in some cases, there are up to 10-12 items. Add to that the fact that Buryat jewelry is massive, heavy, and artfully made and you’ll get the full picture. The folk jewels often determine the whole look of a woman in Buryat traditional apparel. These people even turned personal hygiene tools (tongs, manicure set, or ear pick) and household tools (needle, knife, or fire striker) into elaborate jewelry items. And they look fascinating!

Terleg avaMongolian traditional male clothes aren’t very diverse. Many garments look rather alike for a foreigner, but locals differentiate them all right. Let’s find a difference between two popular Mongolian coats: a terleg and a deel. Meanwhile, we’ll get to know and understand these nomadic people better.

Mongolian couple avaMongolian clothing traditions are very ancient, diverse (because every ethnic group has its own peculiarities), and closely connected with the local lifestyle and climate. The traditional costume of Mongolia is unique and original. You won’t confuse it with any other folk dress. There are, of course, a lot of variations of the national attire according to the region of the country. The greatest diversity is in the shape of a headdress. Some hats are so elaborate and odd that they can easily impress and surprise just about anyone.

longyi avaTraditional clothing of many Southeast Asian countries includes wrap-around skirts instead of pants and shorts. The climate here is very hot and humid, so extra airing is comfy for the body and people often use loose clothes. In Myanmar (Burma), both men and women wear a wrap-around cloth around their lower body called “longyi” (lon chee). There are various ways of draping it and, sometimes, longyi is sewn into a tube for convenience.

Kayan avaThe women of Kayan tribes have an odd and even dangerous tradition to lengthen their necks with special brass neck rings. They’ve been doing it for centuries. That’s how these women identify themselves – by their attire, jewelry, and this eye-catching physiological peculiarity. The outsiders have different attitudes to this unusual tradition, but one thing truly is a fact – Kayan women’s necks attract attention and are unique on this planet.

Daura Suruwal avaThe national costumes of Nepal are deeply connected to the local religious beliefs. Even the number of fastenings or color of the piece can be explained from the point of view of the symbolism. Let’s take a closer look at the main Nepalese male and female garments – daura-suruwal, gunyou cholo, and Dhaka topi. These are not the only traditional pieces worn in Nepal, far from it, but they are among the most popular and often serve as the ceremonial garments.