We’ve been asked about Sri Lankan traditional pieces of clothing, other than the world-famous sarong and sari. Of course, there are a few other folk garments. And this article is dedicated to them. If you can add more, feel free to do it in the comment section. These unique authentic pieces are worth talking about and they represent the rich traditional culture of Sri Lanka. Lama sariya, dhoti, pancha, redda and hatte, kabakuruttu, and other local folk garments.
Dhoti and pancha – wrap-around garments for the lower part of the body. It is worn by men throughout Asia. This is a long rectangular piece of cloth (about 4.5 m or 15 ft) wrapped around the body from waist to ankles so that it formed sort of trousers. Dhoti and pancha resemble trousers more than a skirt, they’re just unstitched. This garment can be either day-to-day or festive, adorned with embroidered border, made from costly silk fabric, etc.
Redda and hatte – colorful outfit for women. It consists of two parts: hatte is a linen blouse and redda is a long piece of cloth (2.5 m or 8 ft) wrapped around the lower body. This set is often worn for weddings, religious ceremonies, and even formal events.
Kabakuruttu – variation of a hatte. It is a long-sleeved white jacket with V-neckline. The edges are often adorned with lace. The kabakuruttu is fastened with pins at the front.
Lama sariya – female set of clothing. It consists of a fitted blouse or jacket with a wide frill at the collar and a wrap-around skirt (long rectangular piece of cloth wrapped around the lower body). The drape is ankle-length and also fitting, it may have a wide frill as well. Often, the abdomen is left bare to cool down the body in extreme Sri Lankan heat. Young girls prefer white lama sariya, while older girls and married women can wear a colorful and ornate outfit. This attire is often used for ceremonial occasions, weddings, and other special events.
The photo is from Lama-saree.blogspot.com
Pavada thavani – women’s outfit. It is actually a variation of so-called “selai”, long piece of fabric worn in a sari style. The set consists of a skirt, a tight-fitting blouse, and a selai draped on top.