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Tibetan Clothes--Men and Women

Tibetan men's clothing is divided into three types: Leigui (labor dress), Zhuigui (formal dress) and Zhagui (warrior dress). Women's clothes change greatly in festivals, major events in life and ceremonies. The costumes of festivals are more sumptuous and solemn than those of ordinary days.

Nowadays, many Tibetan families have added modern clothes such as suits and jackets to their wardrobes, reflecting the new taste of the Tibetan people.

However, many people still wear traditional clothes at festivals.

Tibetan Men's Clothes

Tibetan Legui (labor dress)

Legui (labor dress)

As the climate changes throughout the year, so does the Tibetan labor dress. In spring and summer, cotton or white cocoon silks big left front and small right front are commonly worn on the upper body. Outside wear a round-collar, wide-sleeve robe which is quilted by cotton or wool. This robe is called chuba in Tibetan. The lower edge of the robe is line with the knee, forming a pouch around the waist for carrying things. The trousers are wide around the waist, crotch and bottom. On their foot, they wear short boots and a felt hat.

In the winter they wear huge embroidered sheepskin coats, belted full-length robes with sleeves long enough to serve as gloves, thick felt trousers, amulets, and thick padded boots made from strips of leather. Wear a leather cap with earmuffs and a pair of homemade Tibetan shoes with long boots or a pair of velvet-covered leather shoes.

Tibetan Zhuigui (formal dress)

Zhuigui (formal dress)

Zhuigui are festival costumes and etiquette dress with expensive materials and exquisite workmanship. They are boutiques of Tibetan clothes. The formal dress is normally divided into two parts: under garment and outer coat. 

The inner garment is made of silk and glow worm silk. The colors are generally white, purple and light yellow. The lapel, flaperon and neckline are inlaid with gold or silver edge. They are normally long-sleeves. The outer garment is made of damask with round life, millet lotus and other floral patterns. The style is the same as the inner one, but it is sleeveless. 

The trousers are made of white firefly silk, and the feet are dressed in Tibetan boots with the fur down.

The main jewelries for male jewelry are Gawu, waist knife, the beautiful wavy pleat on the back of chuba and silver knife with dragon inlaid.

Tibetan Zhagui (warrior dress)

Zhagui (warrior dress)
Tibetan warrior wears a fox fur hat on head, Tibet wool chuba with mink edge on the body and long knife at the waist. With talisman and shotgun decorated, the Tibetan worriors show the manly beauty of the warrior.

Tibetan Women's Clothes

Tibetan Women's Clothes

The most common clothing worn by Tibetan women is the sleeveless chuba, with woollen trousers at the bottom and a woven apron and wide ribbon around the waist. Traditional Tibetan boots are chosen. Women sometimes wear thick black coats and wide-brimmed felt hats and carry wood-frame rucksacks. Some women wear brightly colored cloaks and sewed bold appliques on a green background with geometric designs in different colors, such as red and gold.

In summer, women wear bright, flowing skirts and beautiful hats or scarves., sometimes decorated with jewelries representing good-luck. In the winter they put on knee-length coats, or capes made from yak, goat or sheepskins.

Tibetan Women's Clothes

The special features of Tibetan women's clothing are mainly reflected in the changes of clothing during festivals, major events in life and ceremonies. Festival dress are more sumptuous and solemn than the usual dress. On the other hand, there is a big difference between the adult rites and the women's clothes before and after marriage, which is also a feature of the Tibetan dress system.

Married women wear colorfully striped aprons and braid strips of colored cloth into their hair, and wear gold and silver ornaments, silver jewelry with coral and turquoise and a prayer necklace. Unmarried girls sometimes wear special garments that indicate the wealth of the girl's family so suitors can estimate the dowry they will receive.