Here’s What Traditional Outfits from 4 Cultures Across the World Look Like


As humanity evolved from caves to castles, different cultures of the world took on various styles and forms. A culture portrayed its ideals and beliefs through art, dance and fashion. Their sense of clothing was intimately woven with the fabric of the culture (pun intended) and it slowly evolved with the tides of time. We bring to you a glimpse of some traditional styles of clothing from prominent cultures across the world.

1. Ghagra Choli, India

Ghagra-choli traditional outfits

Image courtesy – SweetCouch

Ghagra-Choli, also called Lehenga-Choli is the traditional outfit for women native to India. It is native to the Northern belt (pun intended) of the country, most notable in the Punjab region up to the Tharuhat of Nepal across states like Rajasthan, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Jammu. It essentially consists of a lehenga, a tight choli and a dupatta. A lehenga is a long skirt pleated with lots of beautifully detailed embroidery. A choli is a midriff-baring blouse shell garment with a tight fit and a dupatta is a shawl or large scarf worn together with the lehenga and choli. Eye candy at its finest!

2. Kanga, African


Kanga style

Image courtesy – cqmsjt

The Kanga or Khanga is a colorful garment worn by women and sometimes men, native to Mama Africa especially in the African Great Lakes region. It has been long known as the traditional type of clothing of African countries and is also called lesos in some places. It is a piece of printed cotton fabric, about 1.5 m by 1 m with a border along all four sides and a central design which is unique to the border. Whats interesting about this outfit is that it usually contains a message usually in the language of Swahili, or even Comorian or Arabic. Usually the messages contain traditional proverbs or riddles. That sounds interesting, doesn’t it?

3. Irish Traditional Wear

kilt liene men irish traditional outfits                kilt liene women irish traditional outfits

Image courtesy – The Lovely Planet

Although not specifically called by any name, the Irish way of dressing is easily distinguishable from any other style around the world. The Irish have an array of clothing that are extraordinarily detailed with stitching and embroidery of various textures and colours. In ancient Ireland, the countryside peasants used to wear Liene which was the garment that hailed from the highlands. Liene is a long tunic shirt and the designs on them are derived from the stone carvings found on the Cross of Muiredach. Men just wear the liene, while women used the shirts as undergarments covered by open-sleeved dresses. Men would wear liene with a woolen jacket, breeches and a shaggy-looking cloak called a mantle. The mantle was fastened at the front with a bodkin or brooch. Seems like they could have been the pioneers behind the anti gender-appropriation movement, am I right gender activists?

4. Hanfu, China


Hanfu dresses

Image Courtesy – The Lovely Planet

The classical Chinese dress is called Hanfu which encapsulates the beauty and diversity of the Chinese culture. Hanfu dressings have a great history to them as it was one of the great inheritances from the Han Chinese race. Nowadays, Hanfu is used primarily during festivals, ceremonies and for hobbyists, its cultural significance can never be ignored. They are essentially a Y shaped cross collared top without the limit of buttons or a belt, with loose and airy sleeves. It is usually coupled with hair accessories and ornaments, with females having their hair pinned up in a coil. This dress is usually made of materials like flax, silk, cotton, woolen cloth and sometimes even leather. Very tempting for those who enjoy breezy dresses.

Hope you thoroughly enjoyed slipping into these traditional outfits from around the world as much as we did. Feel free to pour your thoughts out and share your inputs in the comments below.

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