Six national costumes from around the world

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The beauty of a rich and beautiful cultural background is that it’s deep-rooted in the hearts and the minds of the people. A particular culture may have its own distinguishable factors that help to set it apart from the others. One such factor that stands out to the eye is the attire of the people. There are many such beautiful and vibrant folks around the globe who have equally beautiful dresses. We bring some of these to you as a feast for your eyes and soul.


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One of the most culturally rich places in the world is India. People from around the world visit this peninsula to spiritually awaken themselves and also to explore the innumerable traditions that reside in this magnificent country. Another perk of being an Indian is to have access to some of the best looking ethnic wears on the face of this planet. As we mentioned earlier, India has a number of cultures, which implies that it has a number of elegant traditional wears also. Some of the most widely used attire by the Indians is Dhoti (for men) and Saree (for women). Dhoti – a six feet long cloth that is preferably cotton and is worn by the men in villages and some urban places also.

Whereas, a saree may vary in length from 4 meters to 9 meters depending on cultural and personal preferences. Saree is one of the most common dresses in the traditional section for India as it is seen throughout the country. A wide range of colour and material is used for sarees. Raw material can vary from being as simple as cotton, to as fancy as silk. The different regions may also be a factor for the changes in the designs along the country. The sarees seen in the south of the country might be a bit different from the ones found in the north. Even the length may depend on one’s personal choice or also on the traditional influence of the particular region or state.


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Scotland is a mesmerizing country situated in the United Kingdom. The country is yet another great example of a diverse cultural background. The national costume for this scenic country is Kilt for men and Tartan skirt for women. Complete traditional dresses have separate elements that come together to make one whole national costume. For men, their attire may include a kilt, a sporran, a sgian dubh, ghillies and a kilt hose. On the other hand, a women’s costume consists of ankle or knee-length skirts (depending on personal choice) and shawl.


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Mariachi music and sombrero hats are one of the few things that pop up in our heads when we hear Mexico. This country has one of the most globally known traditional costumes. Both men and women have different clothing combinations regarding the full dress. National costume for men includes a beautiful and embroidered Charro suit, the well-known, ‘wide-brimmed’ Sombrero hat (typically made from straws), Guayabero shirt and a Baja jacket. Women enjoy the comfort of huipil, rebozo, Mexican skirt and a traditional poncho.

A number of different accessories are also a part of the wholesome attire for both the sexes. For men, accessories may include sombreros, boots, cowboy hats, faja and moral. Women also have a wide range of accessories which may include necklaces, ribbons, shawls, scarfs and amulets. Some necklaces are creatively made by the help of seashells and are widely loved and worn throughout the country.


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This gorgeous landlocked country is present in Asia next to Iran and Pakistan. Traditional clothing here is known for its loose-fitting, and also for their traditional turban which is known as a ‘lungee’. The dress consists of traditional shirts and pants for both men and women. Even though they might look different for different genders, the idea is still the same. Women in the country wear loose fitted pants called tunbaan.

A headscarf is also a part of their dress, which compliments the look. This headgear is commonly known as chador. Many females are seen in burqas across the country. Afghanistan is no stranger to embroidery. Fancy clothing during festive seasons may also include colourful tunbaans with embroidery. This might also include small circular mirrors stitched into the fabric, giving it a festive shine.

Men wear perahaan tunbaan which is an example of pant/shirt combination. However, the dress also includes a waist cloth cord known as ‘azaarband’, which is used to adjust and hold the dress in place. Men also have a headgear to go with this traditional dress. It’s called a lungee. There are different ways to tie a lungee around the head. This varies from region to region across the country. A range of fabric raw material is used in making lungee. It is also seen as a status symbol in a few parts of Afghanistan. Turbans can also include embroidery. At formal occasions, men tend to wear a chapan (coat), a vest over perahaan and a karakul hat.


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Wales is a country situated in southwest Great Britain. It is popularly known for its Celtic culture and its admiringly unique Welsh language. The famous distinctive tall chimney hats are a product of this country. Hats are usually seen as a part of a man’s attire, however, things are a bit different here. Both men and women in Wales are seen sporting tall hats. The elements of men’s costume may include a waistcoat, preferably of bright colours, a jacket, a pair of breeches, woollen stockings, a black felt hat and a neckerchief. This clothing is quite similar to what men wear in England as they had a great influence on this.

Women, on the other hand, have quite a number of components in the costume. It consists of a gown or a bedgown which is one of the unique features of the dress. It is most commonly known as betgwn. A flannel skirt along with an underskirt come next on the list. They include vertical and horizontal stripes that are often dark blue or black and white.

Shawls are an important piece of this attire. They come in different sizes and shapes. Shawls can be identified by their different dimensions as well as certain aspects, such as fringes, colours, and material used. Some of the shawls known in the country are Square shawls, whittles, nursing shawls, turnovers and The Paisley shawl. Paisley shawl is known for its Paisley patterns, hence, the name.

The attire also includes an apron in checkered patterns, stocking and a cap. The Welsh traditional tall hats are the most distinctive features of this combination. They are usually flat-brimmed and drum-shaped.


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Japan has one of the most known and popular costumes across the globe. People of this country still practice their vintage fashion practices to date. However, in day to day life, Japanese people wear western clothes but at the time of an occasion, they wear their traditional attires which we can still see in today’s culture. Some clothing elements for Japanese men and women may overlap. One such component is the Kimono collar. Kimono collar is always supposed to be worn in a left over right manner. You cannot wear it right over left until it is your own funeral, in which case you really don’t have a choice. Alive and kicking people are not supposed to wear it this way.

The traditional Japanese dresses are known for their floral and mosaic designs on jackets and kimonos. Women wear kimono as part of their cultural attire. Kimonos are world widely known and people around the globe of Japanese origin are seen rocking it during special occasions. There are different types of Kimonos worn by women here. It depends on various factors such as age, marital status, events, occasions and so on. Other elements of the dress may include the nagajuban, the obi, the obiage, the tabi and the shoes.

Various patterns and designs on the kimono available.

The obi is one of the most important parts of the attire. It’s made of silk and is 13 feet long. The silk is hand woven for the obi. Japanese costumes can be very difficult to wear and may require some help from another person to put it on. Whenever you want to try a kimono with its full traditional glory, take some help along with you.

Men wear Montsuki/haori as their traditional dress. Hakama that is a pair of wide pants are worn with the traditional kimono along with the obi, socks and shoes. The main element of a man’s dress is the kimono which is a long robe. Kimono is usually a 5 piece clothing excluding the footwear. A special footwear with flip-flop design is used. A Happi coat is a traditional jacket with straight wide sleeves and is worn by men. It usually has a print of family crest on it.

These were some of the most epic and beautiful cultural/national costumes from around the world. These costumes are not just nationwide famous but are known to the whole world. The beautiful attires from across the globe are a reminder that traditions and cultures are beautiful.