Traditional Chinese Wedding Dress & Attire
Fashion traditions and tips for the bride, groom, wedding party, and guests.
In western countries, we’re often accustomed to seeing white wedding gowns and black and white tuxedos at wedding ceremonies, but that’s not the case at traditional Chinese weddings. In fact, Chinese wedding dresses and suits are often much brighter, more vibrant and colorful than the ones you see at western affairs.
In Chinese culture, there is a strong connection with the symbolism behind certain colors and animals and these aspects show up in wedding attire. For example, the color red is often regarded as a sign of happiness, life and good fortune. Therefore, you will often see the bride donning a Chinese wedding dress in red. It’s also common to see dragons and phoenixes embroidered into the wedding attire, as dragons represent power and luck, while the phoenix is a sign of femininity, virtue and grace.
Interested in learning more about Chinese wedding attire? From the bride’s traditional Chinese wedding dress to the groom’s regal robe, we’ve provided more details about the elegant clothing you may see at a Chinese wedding ceremony.
Traditional Chinese Wedding Attire
In China, the style of ceremony dress varies from region to region, but typically, the bride’s gown is red and features an embroidered phoenix, the female half of the traditional symbol for bride and groom. For a northern Chinese bride, the wedding dress is generally a long, form-fitting, one-piece gown called a qipao or cheongsam. This beautiful frock-like Chinese wedding dress is often red with silver and gold embroidery.
In Southern China, the wedding dress (hung kwa) is often two pieces: a long, decorative jacket over a long, embroidered skirt. This traditional Chinese wedding dress is usually embroidered with both a dragon and a phoenix, giving the attire the modern Chinese name of “dragon phoenix coat” or Long Feng Gua. Along with the dragon and phoenix, you may see five bats embroidered on the coat, too, which symbolize five blessings. There are also several different styles based on how much embroidery covers the design, which can cover anywhere from 30% to 100% of the coat.
In the past, mothers would begin sewing their daughter’s handmade wedding jacket as soon as they were born because it’s an endeavor that can take a long time to complete. Today, many brides tend to skip the traditional jacket over their dress, and expand the color palette to blue with black embroidery or gold with white embroidery.
In the most elaborate of affairs, the bride may also wear a tiara-like accessory made of gilded silver and decorated with feathers and pearls to represent the phoenix. Traditionally it features a red silk cloth to veil the bride’s face as she makes the transition from her family’s home to her husband’s. Because it is usually very heavy, modern brides may wear it only for a short portion of the wedding day for show and photos.
[ TREND ALERT ] Not planning to wear a qipao? Wear red shoes with your white wedding gown to show off your heritage.
The groom’s attire is not as complicated or as elaborate as the bride’s. Usually, he wears a black silk coat, known as a mandarin, over a dark blue robe embroidered with a dragon. The traditional cap is black with red tassels. However, many contemporary Chinese-American grooms skip the coat and just wear the dark blue robe.
[ TREND ALERT ] Take a cue from the bride. If she’s wearing a qipao, keep the balance by wearing a traditional robe. When she changes into her reception dress, that’s your cue to change into a tux or a suit and tie, depending on the formality of your wedding.
Brides may choose to have their bridesmaids wear a contemporary style of dress or follow suit with the bride and don traditional cheongsams in an array of colors.
[ TREND ALERT ] For a formal wedding, choose form-fitting, black, one-piece cheongsams for your maids. Springtime preppy more your style? Look for strapless, pale pink cocktail dresses and give each maid an orchid for her hair.
Nowadays, groomsmen generally wear a tux, even if the groom wears a robe for the ceremony. But for the traditional couple, you may want to have your groomsmen in traditional robes for the tea ceremony. Robes come in a number of colors — for formality, go for all gold robes with blue lining or light blue robes with dark blue lining. The guys can then change back into their tuxes or suits and ties for the reception.
[ TREND ALERT ] Sticking with the Western garb for guys? Have each groomsmen wear burgundy or white orchid boutonnieres.
Guests should dress according to the formality of your event. If you’re getting calls from guests who aren’t sure what to wear, enlist a helpful attendant to spread the word about the dress code. For example, at traditional weddings, guests may be asked to avoid wearing red and gold, as those are reserved for the couple. Also, keep in mind that black and white are usually worn to represent mourning in the Chinese culture, so you may want to skip donning those colors, too. Modesty often plays a big role as well. Cover your shoulders and thighs to be respectful.
[ TREND ALERT ] Don’t stop with your bridal party when it comes to flowers. Honor your parents and grandparents with special corsages and boutonnieres made of plum, lotus, or orange blossoms.
Check out some of our favorite Qipao from real brides!
Whether you’re walking down the aisle or attending your first Chinese wedding, you’re sure to be dazzled by the colorful attire and special customs and traditions. From the elaborate Chinese wedding dress to the traditional robes, this will be one wedding ceremony you’ll treasure forever
4 Chinese Groom Outfit ideas For Your Chinese Wedding – East Meets Dress
There are many options for the bride when it comes to finding a Chinese wedding dress. We’ve got traditional sheath qipaos, modern cheongsams, red mermaid dresses, and everything in between. But what about the groom? Don’t let his outfit be an afterthought at your wedding.
Here are some ideas on how you two can match and show up to your wedding like the power couple we know you are.
1: Traditional Tang Outfit
Let’s start with the more traditional options. If you are wearing a traditional Chinese wedding dress (also known as a qun kwa or qun kua), you can have your fiancé match with his own Tang suit. Traditional Tang suits typically include a long sheath paired with a jacket. Think the outfits that you find in famous Chinese dramas like My Fair Princess (Huang Zhu Ge Ge).
Tang suits are typically adorned with dragon embroidery. Dragons are a popular Chinese wedding symbol as it represents strength, honor and power.
2: Tang Jacket
If you and your fiance want to go a more modern route, you can consider having your fiance wear just a Tang jacket. These range in styles from more traditional to more modern ones.
The more traditional ones feature brocade fabric, a common silk fabric that often has embroidery patterns of dragons and phoenix tails. For example, our Shang jacket features an asymmetrical red and gold dragon pattern. The dragon represents the groom in Chinese wedding culture and together, the dragon and phoenix together symbolize good luck and harmony in marriage. If you’re wearing a red qipao dress or cheongsam for your wedding, this could be a great option to consider.
At East Meets Dress, we offer a variety of brocade fabric for the groom’s Tang jacket.
Not all jackets have to be red. If you are opting for a different color dress, or you’d like your fiancé to be in a black jacket instead, there are also more modern Tang jackets that come in other colors. For example, our Song jacket features a variety of colors and has a subtle dragon embroidery on one side.
3: Brocade Tie or Bowtie
Ok, so your fiancé is not a fan of any of the jackets, or it’s too hot to wear a jacket for your ceremony. We’ve got you covered. A more subtle way to still give a nod to your Chinese heritage is with a tie or bowtie made of brocade fabric. Match it with your favorite dress shirt (like our favorite slim fitting Nimble Made shirts). Our Classic Dragon tie is embroidered with gold dragons and comes in a variety of colors to match your dress, mood, and wedding colors.
4: Mandarin Collar Jacket
If you want a modern East meets West outfit for your groom, consider a minimalist mandarin collar jacket. The mandarin collar is an unfolded, stand up collar that rises a few centimeters up from the neckline (typically 3-5cm). It’s an iconic feature that is popular for both bride and groom outfits at Chinese weddings.
5: Chinese flower boutonniere
We all love a classic suit. So at the end of the day, you can’t go wrong with sticking to a classic suit paired with your cheongsam. But you can still choose to add a pop of color to match your red cheongsam with a red boutonniere.
What type of flower should you get? Lilies and orchids are both popular Chinese wedding flowers. The word lily (百合) in Chinese sounds like part of the proverb 百年好合—which means a happy marriage for a hundred years. The orchid flower is also a symbol of love, wealth and fortune in Chinese culture. So ask your florist to make one for the groom in a color that matches your dress (we love red lilies) or get one on Etsy.
The wedding is a celebration of both of your backgrounds and heritage, so choose the option that feels right for the two of you.
More to Love:
– Shop our mandarin jacket collection for your groom’s attire.
– Check out our Style Guide for the modern bride here.
– Get inspired by our 30 ideas for a modern Asian-American wedding.
9 Unspoken Rules of What to Wear to a Chinese Wedding
For anyone who’s been to a Chinese wedding, you’ll know that there are certain traditions and rules that everyone, including the guests, needs to follow. As a wedding guest, what you wear to a Chinese wedding is very important. Here are 9 unspoken rules of what to wear to a Chinese wedding. You can thank us later!
1. Don’t wear red
Chinese brides usually wear red on their big day, so wearing red as a guest will be considered impolite. After all, you don’t want to look as if you are trying to upstage the bride! Choose a different, more subtle color for your dress, or shirt if you are a man. You really don’t want to be known as the guest who tried to compete with the attention of the bride!
Shop REVOLVE for Wedding Guest Attire
2. Wear warm tones, if you can
Purple, pink, and peach all symbolize new life and happiness in Chinese culture, so wearing these colors indicates that you are supportive of the marriage, and also helps to bring good luck and happiness to the new couple. These are also good color choices because they tend to be flattering on many different skin tones and hair colors, and can work in almost all seasons. Wearing yellow or orange is also considered acceptable.
Photo Credit: [email protected]霍汶希Mani, Net-A-Porter | Shop Net-A-Porter For Wedding Guest Attire
3. Avoid wearing too much black or white
Both white and black symbolize mourning and death in Chinese culture. Wearing these colors to a wedding could bring bad luck to the couple, and is just considered impolite, so they should be avoided. However, you can get away with wearing black or white accents on your dress, especially if the couple is modern or easy going.
Shop Mr. Porter for Wedding Guest Attire
4. You can include festive accents, as long as they fit the dress code
Little touches of gold, which is a popular color in Chinese culture, can really spice up your look without breaking the dress code. You can also include little touches in your outfit that are inspired by Chinese culture, like a mandarin collar on your dress. Especially if you are going to a wedding of a Chinese couple that is held in another country, or aren’t both Chinese, this can show the couple that you respect their culture and that you are excited for their marriage. However, overdoing the oriental accents in your outfit could look like you are trying too hard.
Photo Credit: [email protected]搜狐娱乐, Selfridges | Shop Now
5. Dress length depends on the specific wedding
While there are aspects of a Chinese wedding that are very traditional, brides still like to make their wedding celebration their own. Generally, you should check with the couple, if you can, to see how formal they want the wedding to be before you buy your dress or suit. Unless the invitation specifically indicates that it is a very formal event, above the knee is your best bet for skirt length. If the wedding is very traditional, you’ll need to double check with the bridal party for specific guidelines.
Shop ShopBop for Wedding Guest Attire
6. Keep it classy!
Short dresses should still cover everything – being too flashy or too exposed can be considered impolite, just as they would at most weddings around the world, not just in Chinese culture. And even if the wedding isn’t particularly formal, you should still make an effort to look nice.
Shop BHLDN for Wedding Guest Attire & Bridesmaid Dresses
7. Wear something that represents you well
Especially if you are attending a wedding where you don’t know very many people, you should really consider what your outfit is saying about you. In traditional Chinese culture, the way you present yourself could have an impact on your family’s honor. Even though many families are more relaxed now, you’ll still want to consider how to best represent you. This means that you should stay away from neons, overly flashy silhouettes or detailing that may be perceived as trashy. Chinese tradition is still considered more on the conservative side.
Photo Credit: Haibao.com, Shopbop | Shop ShopBop for Wedding Guest Attire
8. Separates are just as acceptable as dresses
Some Chinese weddings are not nearly as formal as western weddings, and it’s usually totally appropriate to wear a skirt and a blouse instead of a dress, especially if you feel like you would be more comfortable in it. At some Chinese weddings, you will stick out more if you dress too formally than if you don’t dress up at all. Of course, this varies with each wedding so it’s best to double check with the bride and groom, or with someone who is closer to the bridal party.
Shop Saks 5th Avenue for Wedding Guest Attire
9. Make sure your dress stretches!
Chinese weddings are known for their incredible food, and you’ll be expected to at least try every course. If you wear something that’s too tight around the midsection, you may be regretting it by the end of the night! Drapey fabrics are an awesome choice, because they are not only elegant, but they cover up problem areas without restricting your movement.
Shop REVOLVE for Wedding Guest Attire
The Season’s Luckiest Wedding Gowns
In a traditional Chinese wedding, everything is according to custom. The date? Picked in consultation with an astrologer. The location? Chosen for harmonious feng shui. The decor and attire? Rich in auspicious symbolism. But in a modern Chinese wedding, all or none of the above may be true.
“After the Communist Revolution, so many of the ancient traditions that used to exist in China were erased, although they’re still practiced in other Chinese communities around the world,” says author Kevin Kwan, whose Crazy Rich Asians trilogy has more memorable weddings in it than Elizabeth Taylor’s biography. “In mainland China, they’re creating their own traditions—even the proposal is becoming more lavish, more elaborate, with thousands of flowers, fireworks; everyone is vying for their proposal to go viral.”
The idea of innovating ancient traditions in order to create something spectacular is also one of the driving forces behind Haute Couture—and like a character out of Crazy Rich Asians, many wealthy Chinese brides-to-be head straight to the Paris couture houses to shop for their gowns. What better place then, to showcase the most show-stopping dresses of the season, than in mainland China?
Armed with wedding-worthy gowns that riff on tradition, BAZAAR Bride headed to Hangzhou, the city whose beauty is celebrated in an old Chinese proverb that states, “In heaven, there is paradise; on earth, Suzhou and Hangzhou.” The idyllic images below were shot onsite at the Amanfayun, a spa resort of temples and tea plantations on the banks of West Lake, a World Heritage Site renowned for its serene beauty. It’s a heaven-sent backdrop for dresses that draw from the past while looking to the future—much like a wedding itself.
In Chinese tradition, the male counterpart to the bridal phoenix symbol is the dragon, the ultimate in yang energy. Together, the mythological animals make the ideal couple, which is why the traditional Chinese groom’s attire was a dark robe embroidered with a dragon, while the bride wore a headband called a fengguan, or “phoenix crown.” Surrounded by a dragon parade, this bride needs no crown to feel like a queen, or a character rising from the ashes of mythology. Her Schiaparelli Couture hologram gown, hand-beaded with silver paillettes and gold stars, makes her not just a phoenix, but a goddess, too.
Pictured above: Schiaparelli Haute Couture dress, schiaparelli.com; H.Stern earrings, hstern.net.
Diamonds are forever, it’s true. (And this De Beers’ necklace is definitely a keeper.) But so are Chinese knots, intricately woven from a single length of lucky red cord, to symbolize luck in marriage, harmony, prosperity, and abundance. They’re often given as wedding gifts, as the Mandarin word for knot also means “to unite.” In fact, some Chinese couples choose to be tied to each other with a piece of red silk during their ceremony, to recall the invisible cord believed to have connected them since birth—until fate brought them together.
Galia Lahav coat, $2,250, galialahav.com; De Beers “Swan Lake” necklace, debeers.com; Stephen Russell ring, stephenrussell.com; Tiffany & Co. earrings, tiffany.com.
Flirting between pink—the color of happiness—and red, the most auspicious hue, this Reem Acra gown is a lucky choice. Not just because it looks amazing with rubies, which are associated with luck, fame, and royalty in Chinese astrology. But because, in between blossoms, it’s appliquéd with a butterfly, a symbol of longevity. The Mandarin word for butterfly resembles one meaning “70 years,” and the specimen has been considered a sign of romance ever since the ancient sage, Zhuangzhi, chased a butterfly into a garden, where he encountered his true love in an early meet-cute.
Reem Acra Pre-Fall 2019 gown, reemacra.com; Stephen Russell earrings, stephenrussell.com.
Red’s not the only lucky color for Chinese brides. Gold, a symbol of abundance, is everywhere, from jewelry given the bride at the engagement ceremony to the red and gold banners bearing the Double Happiness symbol, which guests may sign instead of a guest book. Why stop there when you can wrap yourself in a voluminous gold gown like this one from Brock Collection?
Towards the end of the tea ceremony, a Chinese bride is often given 24 karat gold jewelry by the groom’s family, to show how much they value her. That may be dragon and phoenix bangles, a bracelet, necklace, earrings, and ring set known as “the four pieces of gold,” or a gilded box containing nine gold miniatures which together make up “the nine treasures.”
Beauty Note: These earrings are enough to cast a golden glow—especially when paired with subtle, but shimmering, golden-green eye shadow. Get the Look: Estée Lauder Bronze Goddess Illuminating Powder Gelée in ‘Heat Wave’ esteelauder.com.
Pictured above: Brock Collection dress, $7,740, net-a-porter.com; Bjorg Jewellery earrings, $253, bjorgjewellery.com.
“I have been to some truly spectacular weddings that really inspired what I write about in my books,” says Kwan. And this Giambattista Valli Haute Couture number, in pale pink, would fit right in. (Just ask Hong-Kong-based Instagram fashion legend Feiping Chang, who wore not one, but two voluminous Valli gowns to her wedding on Capri.) The cascading layers of tulle are shorter in front, just in case you need to saunter down an aisle covered in running water. A modern take on the veil (it’s a fascinator without the hat) adds a soft focus effect, no photoshop necessary.
Beauty Note: One practical reason pink is lucky? It’s flattering on every skin tone. Just look at the rosy created here with pale pink cheeks, eyes, and lips. Get the Look: Estée Lauder Pure Color Envy Sculpting Lipstick in ‘Power Grab’ esteelauder.com.
Giambattista Valli Haute Couture gown, giambattistavalli.com; Tia Mazza veil, tiamazza.com; Stephen Russell earrings, stephenrussell.com.
With a simple, one-shoulder shape, and clean lines trimmed in teardrop-shaped pearls, Ralph & Russo’s sleek stunner is as minimalist as it is glamorous. And since pearls represent enlightenment—they’re the mystical ball the dragon chases during traditional dragon dances—it’s a wise choice, too. Pair the look with a killer pair of heels, like these framed by the slit hem. They’re so eye-catching, they attracted a lucky butterfly to land on this bride’s toe.
Ralph & Russo dress, ralphandrusso.com; Chanel earrings, $1,700, chanel.com; René Caovilla heels, $1,580, renecaovilla.com.
Vietnamese designer Phuong My describes her work as “modern reinterpretations of traditional Asian design for women seeking the extraordinary.” For a Chinese bride, nothing could be more traditional than red bridal attire. The color not only repels the evil eye, it invites luck and wealth, and is associated with life-giving energy. What’s extraordinarily modern is the romantic, unstructured shape, and the weightless tulle fabric, which has this bride floating across the bridge that connects one side of the Amanfayun resort to the other—or from her single days into married life.
Beauty Note: An unexpected way to wear the traditional, auspicious bridal color: on your lashes, so you’re brushing away bad luck and inviting good with every blink.
Phuong My dress, phuongmy.com; Oscar de la Renta earrings, $350, oscardelarenta.com.
The classic gift for a Chinese wedding? A red and gold envelope filled with cash in lucky denominations featuring many nines or eights. When it comes to wealth, luck, and love, more is more—just ask this rolling-in-red-envelopes bride, whose crimson Cucculelli Shaheen dress is hand-beaded to custom specifications. Options for auspicious personalization include a star map of the night sky under which you’ll be getting married, an initial, or auspicious emblem—may we suggest the Double Happiness symbol? Not only is it a wedding classic, it’s also said to have been designed by two young lovers.
Pictured above: Cucculelli Shaheen dress, cu-sh.com; Van Cleef & Arpels earrings, vancleefarpels.com. Below: Phuong My dress, phuongmy.com; Oscar de la Renta earrings, $350, oscardelarenta.com.
While it hasn’t traditionally been an auspicious color for Chinese weddings, blue is associated with wood in feng shui; it represents strength, as well as the season of Spring. And what better hue to be married in than one linked to that season of new beginnings? This Richard Quinn strapless midi mixes the color of healing and harmony with green, which is thought to bring wealth, hope, and growth—all good things to have at your wedding and in your marriage.
Richard Quinn dress, richardquinn.london; Chopard earrings, chopard.com; Midnight 00 heels, matchesfashion.com; Tia Mazza veil, tiamazza.com.
Good feng shui can turn any venue into a lucky setting. Running water, for example, is calming—so it’s smart to seat complicated personalities next to a fountain at your wedding. Even more soothing? A natural body of water like Hangzhou’s famed West Lake. On its shore, the bride wears Vera Wang’s “Hyacinth” gown. A structural design with folded details gives the dress an architectural shape worthy of the two pagodas in the background, and the serenity of this setting.
Vera Wang Bride “Hyancinth” gown, verawang.com. Vera Wang Bride detachable silk flower pins, verawang.com.
Romance, drama, and luck come together in Monique Lhuillier’s “Bloom” gown, all voluminous skirt and sleeves covered in a print of lilies of the valley. A traditional wedding flower in Europe (where lily of the valley was carried by both Kate Middleton and Megan Markle), it would be considered auspicious in China too, because the Mandarin word for “lily” sounds like the phrase for “100 years of a happy union.”
Beauty Note: Finish the look with a red lip for an ample dose of auspiciousness. Get the Look: Estée Lauder Pure Color Envy Paint-On Liquid LipColor in ‘Poppy Sauvage Matte’ ulta.com.
Monique Lhuillier “Bloom” gown, moniquelhuillier.com; Bvlgari earrings, bulgari.com; Stephen Russell engagement ring, stephenrussell.com; De Beers “Adonis Rose” cluster ring, $16,500, debeers.com.
While the average Chinese bride changes clothes four times during her wedding—from a traditional red qipao to a white Western-style gown, a ball gown, and a going-away outfit—some have been known to wear as many as 30 ensembles. No matter the amount of quick-changes, Alexandre Vauthier’s high-low, Haute Couture number is hands-down the most fun, with its fluffy layers and crystal-and-feather-embellished neckline. Cap it off with extras in color, like this bold pair of emerald mules with an added dose of sparkle.
Alexandre Vauthier Haute Couture dress, alexandrevauthier.com; Manolo Blahnik mules, $955, farfetch.com; Bvlgari earrings, bulgari.com; De Beers “Adonis Rose” cluster ring, $16,500, debeers.com.
As she crosses the threshold into this new stage of her life—or at least passes through the gate of one of seven temples on the grounds of the Amanfayun—the bride is the image of feminine beauty. That’s partly because of the phoenix embroidered on the back of her navy Adrian Gan gown, the ultimate symbol of yang energy, which appears on customary Chinese bridal attire.
But while the imagery is traditional, the shape couldn’t be more modern—it’s a jacket that buttons to the waist, then opens over a tulle skirt. The combination of classic and cutting edge is what makes Jakarta-based Gan one of the most sought-after designers for wedding wear in mainland China.
Adrian Gan gown, instagram.com/adrianganworld; Stephen Russell earrings, stephenrussell.com; Alexis Bittar ring, $235, alexisbittar.com.
A tiny gold “union mirror” is one of the auspicious items found in the 9 Lucky Treasures box often given to a Chinese bride, as it is believed to represent a happy marriage and the bride’s ongoing beauty. Imagine the good fortune you’d invite, then, by covering yourself in a mirror head to toe—specifically, Carolina Herrera’s reflective gown with a lush flower growing on the bodice. The silver hue is a modern alternative to gold that also represents wealth and purity.
Carolina Herrera gown, carolinaherrera.com; Kenneth Jay Lane earrings, $150, orchardmile.com.
At a wedding, dragon and phoenix imagery is the classic way to embody the yin-yang of female and male energy. Wearing Viktor & Rolf’s tuxedo-front jumpsuit fit for a bride is another, more unexpected option. An arresting hairstyle isn’t just an opportunity to make a style statement, but also a way to layer more luck into pre-wedding prep.
Historically, a Chinese bride’s beauty routine included the shang tou ritual, in which a happily married lucky woman would arrange her hair while repeating blessings. Today, a friend or relative may say a few words while the hairdresser works magic.
Viktor & Rolf Mariage jumpsuit, viktor-rolf.com; Chopard earrings, chopard.com; Stephen Russell engagement ring, stephenrussell.com.
Lucky fruit is among the gifts exchanged during an engagement ceremony, the offerings strewn on the marital bed prior during the au chuang bed-making ritual, and the items involved during the tea ceremony. Dried fruit symbolizes sweet beginnings, and lotus seeds and pomegranates invite fertility. Other fruit is lucky because of its name—the word for pomelo sounds like the one for prosperity. Pineapple resembles the phrase “good fortune is coming,” and “orange,” when written, contains the character for “lucky.”
To double down on good fortune, the fruit should be present in lucky numbers—six (the word sounds like the one for “flow,” which means luck will rush over you), eight (it sounds like prosperity) or nine (long-lasting). Yes, the three-puffed sleeves on this Carolina Herrera gown, which add up to six segments, struck us as lucky, but so did the fact that it’s absolutely stunning.
Carolina Herrera bridal gown, carolinaherrera.com; Mindi Mond earrings, mindimondny.com.
How could married life be anything else, what with the abundance of auspicious symbols both above and below the water. Wearing a Valentino gown embellished in peony pink, poppy red, and saffron—the holy hue worn by Buddhist monks, and the emperor’s color in Imperial China—the lucky bride looks for mandarin ducks and koi, both of which symbolize happy unions. Ducks mate for life, after all, and koi, with their black and white coloring, are swimming symbols of yin and yang.
Valentino Fall 2019 gown, valentino.com; Oscar de la Renta earrings, $350, oscardelarenta.com; Ella Zubrowska earrings worn as hair clips, ellazubrowska.com.
Traditional Chinese bridal attire is embroidered with peonies, a symbol of marital love. This bride takes the idea a step further, carrying an armful of the fortunate flowers and all but turning into the bridal blossom in her lush, peony-colored Jason Wu gown. A flash of pink in a sea of green, she’s standing amid one of the Amanfayun’s tea fields. Tea was considered so valuable, it became an integral part of a Chinese bride’s dowry, and the tea trees themselves represent fidelity—because a mature plant can never be transplanted elsewhere.
Jason Wu Collection gown, jasonwustudio.com.
It wouldn’t be a traditional Chinese wedding without a tea ceremony, an elaborate ritual in which the betrothed couple pours tea for their elders. “It’s a way to pay respect to the families, but it also helps to introduce the relatives to one another,” says Kwan, who notes that tea ceremony is an integral part of weddings all over Asia. “The customs differ from place to place, but they’re all about the same underlying themes—prosperity, abundance, unity, harmony in families.”
Even if the symbolism of the tea ceremony is the star of this specific part of the show, this Zimmermann look is definitely stealing part of the spotlight. With a Victorian-style neckline, and a patchwork of lace, it’s modest enough to serve tea to the in-laws, and memorable enough to prove that their newest family member has a strong sense of style.
Zimmermann “Sabotage” lace dress, $4,500, zimmermannwear.com; Malone Souliers heels, malonesouliers.com; Chopard earrings, chopard.com; Ben Amun brooches worn as hairpins, ben-amun.com.
She can bring home the tea, serve it up in a ceremony. But beneath her elegant exterior, our bride is as untamed as the nature that surrounds her—or the waves of gorgeous ruffles rippling down her Giambattista Valli Haute Couture gown. Its high-low silhouette makes it easy to run free—into the forest or down the aisle. Either way, she’s racing toward her future, not away from it. After all, she’s surrounded by green plants, which bring harmony according to feng shui.
Giambattista Valli Haute Couture gown, giambattistavalli.com.
Photography by KT Merry; Creative Director & Stylist Carrie Goldberg; Written by Eleni N. Gage, author of Lucky in Love: Traditions, Customs, & Rituals to Personalize Your Wedding; Production by The Wedding Atelier; Cinematography & Video Direction by Brian Choy; Hair by Adrian Clark using Moroccan Oil; Makeup by Victor Henao for Estée Lauder; Contributing Fashion Editor Tennille Yamashita; Starring Junli Zhao for Elite Model Management; Casting by Muzam Productions; Photo Assistant Chad Keffer; Digital Tech Benjamin Rosser; Market Editors Kathy Lee, Andrea Zendejas, and Danielle Flum; Floral Design by The Floral Atelier; Shot at AMANFAYUN; Special Thanks to AMAN and Cathay Pacific.
Why Chinese Brides Wear Red Dresses
Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue.
While we love seeing a Western wedding with a bride in a white dress, we’re in awe when we see the influence of other cultures in wedding customs.
Chinese brides choose to wear the Qipao to pay homage to their tradition. The qipao, also known as a Cheongsam, is a one-piece red dress that often details an elaborate gold or silver design.
Black and white, which are considered classic wedding colours, are symbolic of mourning and death in Chinese culture. Ironically, red, which we associate with anger or danger, becomes a sign of honour, success, loyalty, fertility and love – it is the Chinese sacred colour and it drives evil spirits away on the big day.
Because of this, the Chinese bride is the lady in red!
Be sure not to don a red dress at a Chinese wedding because you don’t want to be the guest upstaging the bride!
It is common for modern day brides to get the best of both worlds and wear a red qipao and a white dress. Gold accents make an appearance in Chinese decorations and embroidery because they represent wealth and fortune.
In Southern China, brides will wear a Long Feng Gua – a two-piece red dress adorned with a dragon and phoenix, that symbolise the groom and bride respectively (all hail our Phoenix Fairies).
By Superpanda Presents
The wedding attire doesn’t end there.
Chinese brides can wear a red silk veil that helps cover their flushing faces! We love this idea because we can imagine the nerves! It is also a vow that when the groom removes the veil, it marks the start of a life of cherishing each other.
Chinese brides can also opt for a more blingy headdress – the Chinese Phoenix Coronet.
The coronet is a most honourable ornament and despite its origins in the Ming Dynasty, it resonates with modern brides for its exquisite craftsmanship.
Chinese brides haven’t left out bridal shoes – they can be seen in red or pink shades and delicate patterns.
We are loving our Chinese Fairies from head to toe.
WRITTEN BY SHAYMAH ALKHAIR
Evolution of the Chinese Wedding Dress: Part 1
Longfenggua (龙凤褂), xiuhefu (秀禾服), and malaigua (马来褂) are three modified forms of the original Manchu wedding dress shown above.
They have made a comeback in modern China due to their more orthodox appearance. Some people argue that Manchu-originated dresses don’t represent Han Chinese, but we won’t go into that logic.
The longfenggua is the most complex in design and the most representative of what Manchu royals wore. The dress is more popular in Guangdong province in Southern China. The dress is mostly embroidered in five styles: 30%, 50%, 70%, 90% and 100%.
This particular longfenggua is called guahuang (褂皇), which is 100% embroidery.
Many Chinese people confuse longfenggua for xiuhefu and vice versa, but the differences are easily observable. Can you spot them?
The shape of longfenggua will always be straight like a tube. Xiuhefu, on the other hand, is more versatile in movement. This dress appeared late to the scene, around the end of the Qing Dynasty and the beginning of the Republic of China. It was more of a commoner’s wedding attire. However, the dress was popularized by the movie 橘子红了 which starred the famous actress Zhou Xun.
Another major difference between the two is the position of the placket. Longfenggua’s placket is always centered, while xiuhefu’s can either be centered or positioned on the side. Supposedly, dresses with centered plackets could only be worn by the main wife while side plackets were worn by the concubines. China now practices monogamy, so how the placket opens depends solely on the bride’s taste.
Lastly, malaigua is a fusion of Southeast Asian styles, such as Indian silk with the traditional Chinese layout and patterns. It is called malaigua because it was worn by the ethnic Chinese from Malaysia. This dress comes in different colors such as blue, green pink, purple, etc.
11 Things You Must Know About Attending a Chinese Wedding
Both invitations and wedding gift money are given in red envelopes with 囍 (“double joy”) on.
If you’re coming to China to attend a wedding, you’ll be surprised by the differences in tradition.
Due to China’s size and many different ethnic minorities, not all weddings will be the same. Traditions vary depending on where you are.
Read up on these differences beforehand so that you can enjoy the wedding more. The following 11 things you really should know…
Chinese weddings are not the place where vows take place, as this is done at a local government office beforehand when the paperwork is signed. Therefore if you attend a Chinese wedding you will not be watching the legalization of the marriage, but just be attending the celebration of the union between two people, generally through many courses of delicious food.
Chinese wedding invitations are usually presented in a long red envelope, similar to the traditional hongbao in which money is gifted to people at weddings, during Chinese New Year, etc.
The “double happiness” character 囍 (shuangxi 双喜) appears on the envelope, which, back in the day, was hand delivered to the guests a few days before the wedding. Today the invitation is usually mailed out.
These days the couple usually will have an elaborate wedding album prepared before their wedding, with pictures taken around the city, often at popular tourist sights — the more romantic and pretty the better.
The wedding album, however, will not usually contain pictures of the actual ceremony. Wedding photos are taken in advance, so they can be on display at the wedding breakfast.
If you visit China during spring, summer or fall you might see couples having these professional pictures taken. Most like Western-style outfits and surroundings, but being as they tend to have several different outfits and settings, they can choose traditional and modern, fun and formal. It is a great idea as it takes the pressure off on the day, and everyone can see the photos as they decorate the wedding venue.
4. Pre-Wedding Activities
Before a Chinese wedding celebration, the groom will often go to the bride’s house to collect her.
However, the bride will be surrounded by a few of her girlfriends, who will tease the groom before handing over the bride. The girls will have to be bribed or convinced by the groom with pretends or envelopes with money before they will hand over their friend, the bride. Then, the bride and groom will bow to the bride’s parents before taking her to the groom’s house.
Traditionally, Chinese weddings are very different from Western weddings even just in terms of colors.
Red plays a vital role in Chinese weddings, because this color is associated with success, loyalty, honor, fertility, and love, amongst others. Because of this, decorations at Chinese weddings are generally in red, and so is the bride’s dress.
Gold is also commonly used, as it portrays wealth and fortune.
White, is commonly associated with funerals in old tradition , so not often used. Dark colors, such as black, gray, and dark blue, are also best avoided. However, western-style wedding has become mainstream for recent years and all colors are acceptable. Read more about lucky and unlucky colors.
Decorations in the hall will usually involve 囍 the “double joy” character, reserved solely for matrimonial usage. Colors are red and gold mostly, and banners with wishes in various different phrases, will also be hung on the doors and windows of the venue in order to wish the new couple well.
Flower are used to decorate tables at Chinese weddings, in a similar way to Western weddings. Lilies are the type of flower most commonly used for weddings as the Chinese name for lilies, baihe 百合, sounds similar to a common idiom that means ‘happy union for a hundred years’, bainian haohe 百年好合. This flower also has another connotation, as it is known as the flower that brings sons to the happy couple. Orchids are also used at times, as they represent a happy couple, love, wealth and fortune.
As visitors to the wedding, you usually will give a red envelope to the bride and groom, with money inside it. Make sure you do not put anything in multiples of four, as four is an unlucky number in China. There are some more requirements. Take a look at the cultural restrictions on gifts.
Bride in Chinese Qipao Dress
At most Chinese weddings, the bride will wear a traditional Chinese qipao dress.
However, it is becoming increasingly common to wear a white Western-style wedding dress. This is especially the case when the bride wears more than one dress, as happens in many weddings. In that case the bride will wear a red qipao, a Western-style wedding dress, and a ballgown.
The ceremony will start in one dress, and after the first three courses the bride will change into the next dress. Then again, after another three courses, the last wedding dress will come out. Guests can wear any formal attire in accordance with the bride and the bridegroom.
The bride and bridegroom will walk around the tables greeting guests and taking shots of baijiu, traditional Chinese rice-wine, with the guests. At many weddings, however, he will sometimes sneakily switch to water after a few shots as baijiu is very strong. The men attending the wedding will have to take a drink with the groom.
When you leave a Chinese wedding ceremony, you’ll usually be given small wedding favors such as chocolates, candy, or even wallet-sized photographs taken of the couple before the wedding. You’ll receive these as you leave, and the bride and groom will personally see you off.
China Tours Including a Wedding
If you’re coming to China for a wedding, we can tailor-make a tour around your commitments to make the most of your time.
Or, if you’re coming here on your honeymoon, we have plenty of planned honeymoon tours, but we can also adjust to suit your wishes.
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90,000 What color were wedding clothes in China historically?
A scene from the TV series “Prince of Lanlin”: the action takes place in the era of the Northern and Southern Dynasties (420-589).
In Chinese costume series, regardless of the era, the bride and groom at the wedding are almost always dressed in bright red clothes.
However, what is shown on the screen does not always correspond to historical reality. Although red is indeed a festive color in China, do not forget that at different times there were different customs and traditions.The color red began to be used for wedding dresses of the bride and groom relatively late – only in the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1912) eras.
Historically, wedding clothes in China were of the following colors:
- From Western Zhou to the Qin and Han eras inclusive (1027 BC – 220 AD) – black with scarlet trim.
- Wei-Jin, Northern and Southern Dynasties (220-581) – black with scarlet, also sometimes white.
- From Tan to Song inclusive (613-1279) – the bride in green, the groom in red.
- Min (1368-1644) – the bride in red, the groom in green, blue or red.
- Qing (1644-1912) – the bride in red, the groom in his formal dress.
(I will immediately make a reservation that all the following applies primarily to the nobility and wealthy strata of the population. The poor, who were the majority, could not afford to sew special outfits for the wedding and were content to wear their best clothes – if, of course, they had there were more than two changes of clothes.)
From Western Zhou to Qin and Han, wedding dress followed the principle xuanxun 玄 纁: xuan means black and xun means scarlet.The wedding clothes were black, possibly decorated with scarlet ornaments. The undergarments could be scarlet.
This color combination was considered solemn and sacred: in ancient times, black was associated with Heaven, while red meant Earth, so the combination “Xuanxun” meant the unity of Heaven and Earth. (The symbolism of “xuanxun” is older than the current system of the Five States, Wuxing, where black means water and red means fire.)
The high status of black was also due to the fact that true, deep black cannot be achieved with conventional herbal dyes.This required mineral dyes, and the dyeing process was long and complex. Therefore, black fabric was expensive and was only used on special occasions.
In the Qin era, the first Chinese emperor, Qin Shi Huang, promoted the concept of the “Five States” (sometimes this is not quite rightly translated as “Five Elements”). He believed that the Qin dynasty belonged to the water element, since it defeated its main rival in the struggle for power over the Celestial Empire – the ancient kingdom of Zhou, where the fiery god Chzhuzhong was worshiped.In the “Five States” system, the color of water was black, so the flags and official clothes of the Qin dynasty were made black. It also contributed to the high status of black.
In the Han era, the main color of the wedding dress was black. However, with the development of embroidery skills, the wedding dress gradually changed: the fabric could be not only pure black, but also reddish or yellowish, completely covered with exquisite embroidered ornaments.
During the Wei and Jin dynasties, ethnic integration accelerated, and the popularity of various mystical teachings – Taoism, Buddhism – increased.At that time, many intellectuals sought to cast aside the old, shackling traditions and be as free as the “Seven Wise Men from the Bamboo Grove”, wanted to return to nature and live a simple life. The aesthetics of this period were based on the concepts of emptiness and purity, a return to the original state of things, which is why white became popular as the color of everyday clothes. Sometimes white also began to be used for weddings – for both the groom and the bride.
Yes, yes, Chinese brides were getting married in white long before the white wedding dress became mainstream in Europe!
Now the idea of wearing white for the sake of “returning to simplicity” seems very dubious – white fabric gets dirty easily.But traditionally in China, clothes made of white – this meant “unpainted” – fabrics were considered the clothes of commoners: for people who did not have a sufficiently high social status, clothes in bright colors were a) prohibited; b) not affordable. The expression “white robes” 白衣 bayi means a commoner, a person without title. But, of course, while the poor habitually wore their “white” (and in fact gray or brownish) robes of rough hemp linen, noble people, in an attempt to imitate the “simple life”, dressed in bleached fine wool or silk.
From today’s point of view, this is the most complete subversion of the Chinese tradition of “red for joy, white for funeral.” However, traditional mourning clothes were not sewn from bleached pure white fabric, but from unpainted, unbleached rough linen (by wearing uncomfortable clothes, a person showed the depth of his grief), so it was impossible to confuse a person in mourning with a person wearing a fashionable white dress.
However, despite the occasional “wedding in white”, the combination of black and red prevailed until the Tang era.
Still from the TV series “Empress Dugu” 独孤 皇后 2019
Tang is considered the most prosperous era, the peak of the development of medieval China. She was strongly influenced by foreign cultures and was the most open and cosmopolitan of all Chinese dynasties (you can read separately about the fashion and customs of the Tang era here). Techniques for dyeing fabrics improved, luxury and extravagance prevailed in aesthetics, requiring bold and vibrant color combinations. This is how the tradition of “red man, green woman” appeared: the groom wore a dark red outfit, and the bride wore a dark green.(Now the expression 红男绿女 has become an idiom meaning “young men and women in beautiful clothes.”)
So, for the first time, red as the main color of a wedding dress appears in the Tang era – but so far only for the groom. The fact is that in Tang times, the ceremonial dress of officials was red, and it was the ceremonial dress that was supposed to be worn at the wedding.
And, since the then fashion required bright and contrasting combinations, brides began to dress in green.
Women’s wedding clothes were bright, multi-layered, with various decorations, embroidery, etc.It included a top cape with wide sleeves and no lining – dasyushan , as well as a long and wide scarf – or . The hair was decorated with patterned combs and hairpins.
Wedding photo session in the Tang era
The Song dynasty inherited the “red man, green woman” tradition from the Tang, but wedding dress has become much simpler – in accordance with the neo-Confucian teaching, which was adopted as a state ideology in that era and promoted moderation and modesty.
Brides dressed in green or green and red. On their heads they wore “lotus” crowns (more about them here). Gradually, “phoenix” crowns also gained popularity and soon became an integral part of women’s wedding dress – in this capacity they will last until the end of the Qing era.
This is a still from “The Legend of Minlan” and is set in the Song era. In Chinese social networks, he was criticized for the fact that the heroine at the wedding was in green – the historically correct green! This shows how strongly the wedding = red stereotype is ingrained in China.
In the Ming era, the color scheme of the Tang dynasty turned upside down: now the groom wore green, the bride – red:
, purple and other bright colors. In everyday life, most of the population wore gray or dark brown clothing or clothing made from unpainted fabrics, and the wedding dress of those who did not belong to the aristocracy or did not have a high official rank were very simple.
However, in the Ming era, luxury restriction laws made an exception for weddings: on this holiday, people could wear clothes that would otherwise be prohibited to them. Men without an official rank were allowed to wear the official uniform of a lower-ranking official upon marriage. In the Ming era, formal wear was divided into three ranks: the highest rank was red, the middle rank was blue, and the lowest rank was green.
I.e. in the Ming era, depending on the social status of the groom, he could wear to the wedding either green (in most cases), or blue – if he was a middle-ranking official, or red – if he was a high-ranking official.
The bride’s clothes were red. The bride wore a “phoenix” crown or hairpins in the form of flowers or phoenixes, threw a red veil over her head (or covered her face with a round fan – tuangshan ), and also wore embroidered shoes as a symbol of good luck in marriage.
It was the Ming era wedding attire – red for the bride and groom, the veil on the head (which the groom lifts to see his betrothed’s face), a round fan, embroidered shoes – that laid the foundations of what is now considered stereotypical Chinese wedding dress.
After the Manchus conquered China and founded their Qing dynasty, clothing and hairstyles changed dramatically. The Han Chinese were forced to partially shave their heads (in traditional Chinese culture, cutting or shaving their hair was considered disrespectful to their ancestors) and to wear Manchu clothing. The national Han dress, Hanfu , was banned. Later, the ban was partially lifted, but at first, wearing a hanfu was punished severely, up to the death penalty. (Chinese clothing of the Qing era, based on Manchu dress, does not belong to the “hanfu” category.)
On the positive side, the Manchus tried to eradicate the leg bandage tradition – alas, without success. Rather, they, on the contrary, strengthened it: lotus legs became an important part of the national Han identity, a symbol of opposing oneself to the invaders. Over time, even Manchu women began to imitate this custom, wearing the so-called. “shoes in the shape of horse hooves”:
As time went on, the integration of the Manchu and Han peoples deepened. The Qing dynasty ruled for a long time, and as a result, the Manchu and Han cultures largely merged together.
During this period, women’s wedding attire resembled Ming Dynasty clothing, being red with a “phoenix” crown on their heads, while men wore official Qing Dynasty attire:
90,000 Why do Chinese brides have a red dress?
In China, a wedding is a “red” holiday. A huge number of all kinds of wedding attributes, from invitations to boxes in which gifts for young people are put in red.
The color red in the Chinese wedding ceremony is not accidental, because it symbolizes love, that is, the root cause of the celebration, as well as joy and prosperity.
Whatever happens in the country, during good events, the Chinese wear red clothes, drive red cars, and so on. This color of the wedding dress remains unchanged because red is considered a symbol of a good and happy life.
Since the wedding ceremony is a very happy event in their life, a red wedding dress (such as qipao) should be worn by the newly made bride. It is a one-piece satin outfit. The qipao is decorated with embroidery made of silver or gold threads.In some parts of the country, brides like to wear a qipao with an embroidered golden dragon and phoenix.
The fact that the bride wears a red dress for the wedding means a good start to family life.
The traditional wedding dress of the Chinese bride was a red robe embroidered with dragons. The headdress was also quite specific, in the form of a wire frame trimmed with bird feathers, silk pom-poms and medallions. The look was completed with a veil of red or black color.According to legend, she hid the bride’s shame and grief over the fact that she had to leave her home and loved ones.
There is another interesting feature in the traditional choice of the bride’s attire. It is believed that the more the bride changes outfits at the wedding, the wealthier her groom, and the more prosperous the family life of the young will be. As a rule, the outfit is changed three times (white, then orange, yellow or pink and then red), but it happens more often. In modern China, outfits are rented, preferring to spend money on values that are more important for family life.Although it is the red dress, embroidered with traditional ornaments, often adorned with pearls, brides buy and keep as a family heirloom.
Traditions of China: wedding dresses
Chinese wedding dresses – blazing like a lover …
Chinese clothes, its history and features
Traditional Chinese clothing is quite comfortable and elegant
The original culture of the mysterious East and the centuries-old traditions of European countries have always been attracted to each other, like two opposite poles.Designers invariably use oriental motives in creating fashion collections. China is one of the brightest representatives of the East with a unique history. Clothing, like many other things, is a kind of emblem of the great Chinese state. Of course, the national costume of the Celestial Empire is a real bright holiday that invariably attracts everyone to become its participant, trying on an unusual and conceptual Chinese style.
Contents of the article:
A bit of history
The history of Chinese clothing dates back to the beginning of the emergence of Chinese civilization.Each historical milestone in China is marked by the glorious rule of dynasties that have left an indelible mark on the history of the great state. The domination of this or that dynasty had an impact not only on the state system, traditions and culture of the Celestial Empire. Even in the national costume of the inhabitants of China, some changes were introduced in the form of the prevailing colors and features of the decor.
Traditional Chinese Outfits
At all times, the Chinese costume was luxurious and bright, distinguished by an abundance of rich decor.But under the rule of one or another imperial family, the outfit had some differences.
One of the options for traditional menswear in China
For example, during the reign of the Qin and Han dynasties, clothing was distinguished by excessive conservatism.
Han Dynasty men’s costume
Han Dynasty Women’s Costume
Historical fact: it was during the reign of the Han dynasty that the traditional Chinese Hanfu outfit was born, as the traditional costume of the imperial family.Among the people, he dressed for all formal and festive events. During the Tang Dynasty, luxury was welcomed in costume.
Tang Dynasty Ladies’ Outfit
Representatives of the Ming and Snu dynasty were lovers of sophisticated, elegant and graceful clothing.
Ming Dynasty Women’s Outfit
During the Qin Dynasty, the style of dress was somewhat fancy and intricate.
Women’s outfit from the Qin Dynasty
After the end of the era of the Chinese monarchy in the 30s of the twentieth century, the style of clothing also underwent some changes.But one thing is always unchanged: China’s clothes are always bright, original, bold and modest at the same time.
Modern Chinese outfit is more discreet, but still elegant
Features of Chinese costume
Like any national costume, the Chinese outfit has its own distinctive features, which form its own special and unique style:
- The use of mainly natural fabrics with a smooth and shiny texture.
- No overload of details (pockets, draperies, many buttons).
- Bright and juicy shades.
- An abundance of handmade fantasy prints.
- Both men’s and women’s suits have contrasting piping.
A traditional Chinese outfit can cost a lot of money, but such a suit looks very original
A distinctive feature of Chinese clothing is a stand-up collar. Such an element is distinguished by men’s shirts, women’s blouses and dresses. Chinese-style outfits are always appropriate. Such clothes will not go unnoticed both in everyday life and at an exquisite social event or youth party.
Traditional Chinese clothing is a great opportunity to stand out from the crowd
Men ́s clothing
The traditional costume of a resident of the Celestial Empire consisted of trousers, which were called “ku”, and a shirt. At the same time, men’s pants were traditionally hidden under long clothes, since it was considered bad form to show them demonstratively.
Traditional men’s costume
The cut of such trousers was wide, slightly bag-shaped, tied with a sash. They were considered “underwear” and were sewn from simple hemp and cotton fabrics.Men ‘s leggings were worn separately and attached to the belt with ribbons. They were called “taoku”, which means “pants cover”. In the cold season, Chinese men wore quilted trousers, and were insulated on top with thick taoku on cotton wool. The colors of these trousers were soft, pastel. By the way, men’s Chinese pants are always worn at the waist.
Traditional Chinese Martial Arts Trousers
Stylish shirts in the style of mysterious China do not lose their popularity not only in their homeland, but also among European men.What is the phenomenon of such active demand? The answer lies in the severity of cut and originality at the same time. In addition, since the time of the Great Empire, the sewing of a men’s shirt and any other clothing has been necessarily regulated at the state level. That is why Chinese clothing is always of high quality, among the materials you rarely find synthetics, most often these are natural fabrics. The cut of the shirt is simple, but it is in it that the originality of the model lies. Typically, Chinese style summer shirts are single-breasted and short.Men wear them outside.
The traditional shirt in China is called “tangzhuang”, like the costume of the Tang people. This is because the idea of such a shirt was born precisely during the reign of the great Tang dynasty. A long caftan or robe was usually worn on top of the shirts.
Another variation on how to wear a traditional Chinese shirt
Such shirts are made according to the prototype of the clothes of the gallant Chinese officers and have three features:
- Stand collar.
- Flaps of a shirt with a zip in the middle with a rectangular knot.
- Bright or solid color.
This shirt should only be sewn from high-quality natural fabric
Today the color scheme of a Chinese-style shirt can be anything. Most often, preference is given to monochromatic and calm shades. In ancient times, such shirts were bright, the red color of masculinity and courage prevailed, clothes were manually decorated with embroidery with golden dragons.Today, such a shirt can represent both casual style and a strict business style.
Traditional Chinese Business Shirt
And in such a model, you can practice Tai Chi
Chinese style in women’s dress is always new and interesting. That is why designers use Chinese motives when creating unusual and original collections, imbued with the spirit of the East.
Traditional Chinese dresses are always smart and look very original
Traditionally, the Chinese dress among women had a certain classification.Depending on belonging to a particular class, the costume was made from various fabrics. So, the inhabitants of the empire with average incomes sewed everyday clothes from cotton or hemp fabric. If a woman belonged to a noble family or aristocracy, then the outfit was sewn from natural silk with rich decor in the form of gold embroidery or inlaid with precious stones and pearls.
Dresses of noble persons cost a lot of money, so other women were simply not available
By the way, men’s shirts, trousers and robes were also sewn according to the principle of estates.Women’s clothing in the style of the Middle Kingdom still has features:
- Dresses, jackets, trousers and skirts have a tapered cut and slits on the sides;
- Blouses and jackets are decorated with an air loop fastener. Such a zest of the Chinese costume is also typical for a man’s shirt and jackets.
- Women’s casual wear is simple and straightforward, making every outfit sophisticated and elegant. The only exception to the rule is the national Chinese wedding dress.
Chinese national dress is not as versatile as traditional clothing of other peoples of the world. China promotes diminutiveness and elegance, therefore, first of all, they will suit fragile representatives of the fair sex. But modern designers, taking the idea of a Chinese costume as a basis, make some adjustments, creating truly universal models.
A little creativity and a traditional dress becomes comfortable everyday wear
Taking the traditional dress as a basis, the designers create excellent models
The national women’s dress in China is called qipao.It is characterized by a strict cut and a blank collar-stand. Such an outfit is a skillful combination of chastity and attractive seductiveness, because the tight cut and slits on the sides emphasize all the charm and grace of the female figure. Such a truly Chinese style is not ignored today even by Hollywood stars, demonstrating it in evening dresses at special events and on the red carpet.
The now popular qipao outfit was born in the Chinese province of Manchuria. Initially, the dress was a long, wide-cut robe with long sleeves and slits on the sides for easy walking.The first qipao was not graceful or sophisticated, but rather resembled a hoodie. The modern qipao outfit was born as a result of a design experiment, when the artists decided to bring the original Chinese fashion as close as possible to the European one. So, as a result of evolution, the qipao was transformed, the cut resembles a sheath dress. Only the characteristic Chinese stand-up collar and side slits have become unchanged details. Today, the national dress of China is positioned in this form of the qipao dress.
Designers continue to experiment, creating more and more variations of qipao
The combination of styles allows you to create more and more variations of traditional clothing
Qipao can be mini, midi or maxi, dressed as a shirt or tunic under tight trousers.This outfit is perfect both as a casual wear and for going out. In order for the dress to fit exactly on the figure, and this is exactly the idea of qipao, it is necessary to pay attention to the fabric of execution. Most often, dense natural silk is taken as a basis, then the dress does not lose its shape and does not stretch in the sock.
Qipao is a very elegant dress, so you can always find a model for a special event
Chinese wedding dress is an incredibly sophisticated and delicate outfit.By the way, the traditional color of the bride in the Celestial Empire is bright red. Usually such a red dress is embroidered with gold. It is believed that it is the combination of red and gold that brings good luck in family life and wealth. According to the traditions of Northern China, the wedding dress has a tight-fitting cut and a blind stand-up collar. According to the traditions of the southern Chinese provinces, the wedding dress consists of numerous skirts that are worn one on top of the other, as well as a fitted jacket.
A groom’s suit in China usually consists of a plain shirt, jacket and trousers.An obligatory element is a stand-up collar. In ancient times, the groom’s outfit was also red and richly decorated with embroidery. As patterns for the wedding dress of the bride and groom, golden birds were used – a symbol of a happy marriage, flowers – the happiness and good luck of the newlyweds. Today it is a more familiar European version of the costume, but with Chinese elements.
Options for the execution of the groom’s Chinese suits
The traditional national skirt is called plakhta.In ancient times, it was part of the wardrobe of a woman from the middle or upper class. Poor women could not wear a skirts. Later, from everyday wear, such a skirt passed into the category of a formal suit, which a woman wore only on special occasions. By the way, in ancient China, as a part of the wardrobe of valiant warriors, there were also male plakhtas, which were called “shan”. Both male and female plakhtas were sewn from two rectangular cuts of fabric, which were sewn to a wide belt.Both female and male plakhtas had the appearance of an apron with two smooth and dense panels, were made in yellow-red colors, symbolized the Earth and fertility, therefore they were decorated with embroidery in the form of an ornament from grains.
These days, you will hardly be able to meet a girl in such an outfit on the street
A traditional Chinese costume piece is a mandarin jacket or jacket. Such an element of the wardrobe is loved today by both business men and women for its expressive Chinese notes and original style.
A modern jacket with elements of traditional Chinese looks original
It is distinguished by a strict cut, a deaf stand-up collar, a frequent row of buttons. Chinese-style air loops are often used instead of the clasp. A men’s jacket or jacket is most often devoid of pockets and other details that overload it. Under it, you can wear both a classic shirt and a model in Chinese style. Women’s mandarin jacket usually has wide sleeves and a loose, straight cut.The collar is in the form of a small stand or is completely absent. The clasps are usually asymmetrical over the jacket. The jacket is made of lightweight fabric, but always lined to keep its unusual shape. A jacket in Chinese style will always emphasize oriental femininity and elegance.
Now there are a lot of all kinds of variations of the traditional Chinese jacket on the market
According to the rules of ancient Chinese etiquette, men always had to cover their heads.The Chinese are a people with imagination. Therefore, a great variety of hats were invented for different occasions, for different ages and social status. For young men – the heirs of a noble aristocratic family, richly decorated men’s caps were intended. Upon reaching adulthood in China, a young man at the age of 20 underwent a whole rite of donning a guanli headdress.
In the old days, hats were decorated very richly
The emperor had a hat with a complex multi-tiered design, which was called “mian”.Its entire construction was symbolic, each, even the smallest detail, embodied something. For the commoners and working people of the Celestial Empire, men’s cone-shaped hats were intended, which were woven from reeds, rice straw or reeds.
Peasants in traditional hats
In the cold season, felt caps were worn. Women in China did not have a tradition of wearing hats. Only for a wedding or other exceptionally solemn occasions, women wore fengguan, which is complex in shape and design, which means “phoenix hat”.Fengguan was shaped like a fantasy crown, richly inlaid with gold and precious stones. Instead of a headdress, wealthy women wore wigs, which were made from silk threads, ribbons, wool, and even sea grass.
Solemn women’s headdress
Fabrics and designs
China is rightfully considered the birthplace of silk. The ancient Chinese believed that silk was not only an incredibly beautiful material. Until now, there is an opinion that in the process of rubbing the tissue against the skin, a person can be cured of many diseases.Therefore, the fame of such a valuable and extraordinary material quickly spread throughout the world. Silk became the capital fabric in which the national dress of the Celestial Empire was performed. In addition to silk, Chinese craftswomen used cotton fabric, hemp, linen and even bamboo fibers.
Chinese silk amazes with a variety of patterns and colors
As in any national culture, in China since ancient times there has been symbolism, which was embodied in patterns and ornaments, which were used to decorate the national dress a.
The ancient Chinese believed that each drawing applied to clothing could protect from the evil thoughts of envious people or give some features. For example, bamboo personified wisdom and perseverance, a snake – wisdom, a turtle – longevity, and a butterfly – immortality. The lotus flower was an ancient sacred symbol, the source of Life, and the famous Chinese dragon symbolized a good beginning, as well as imperial power.
Colors in the Celestial Empire have played an important role at all times.Like the patterns, the colors were also chosen symbolically:
- Red is the supreme color of China, a symbol of Fire and the Sun, but always in a positive way. Red clothes were traditionally worn for the holidays. It symbolized a joyful mood.
Traditional Chinese holiday dress
- Yellow is the symbol of the center of the world, that is, China itself. In addition, yellow is the color of imperial power, fertility and ripening bread.
The emperor traditionally sat in a yellow dress
- Blue is an ambiguous color.On the one hand, he symbolized the sky, and on the other, he brought misfortune.
A girl in a blue dress from the movie “House of Flying Daggers”
- White is the color symbolizing chaos and the West, where the sun dies. It is still considered a shade of grief and sadness. White robes symbolize mourning.
Chinese girl in white mourning dress
- Black is the color of innermost secrets and wisdom.
Kung Fu is often practiced in black clothes
- Green is the color of the birth of life, spring, and hope.Elegant green Chinese outfit
During the reign of various powerful dynasties, the main colors in China were a variety of shades, based on the main philosophical thought and beliefs. So, the color of the Zhou dynasty was red, as a symbol of mighty fire, which is greater than gold. But during the Qin dynasty, blue prevailed, as a symbol of water that could extinguish fire.
The color and quality of the fabric was the only thing that visually showed the social position and status of a person in China.The rich people of the Celestial Empire chose bright and juicy shades, the poor – simpler and dull ones.
A commoner would never afford such luxurious clothes
The Tang Dynasty is the most famous in the world for the splendor and prosperity of China during its reign. It was an era of luxury, femininity, grace and admiration for Her Majesty Beauty. The colors of clothing at that time resembled sparkling precious stones: purple, turquoise, blue, crimson, green.
Luxurious Tang Dynasty Women’s Outfit
Traditional Chinese clothing is an extraordinary combination of conservatism, minimalism, luxury and elegant sophistication. In addition, it is comfortable and practical, which is one of the determining factors when choosing a style. Putting on clothes in the style of the Middle Kingdom, we not only pay tribute to modern fashion and emphasize the original oriental style. Such a stylized Chinese costume is always expressive and will not go unnoticed by true connoisseurs of fine taste.
China wedding dress color
The Internet and globalization are erasing the traditions of even countries like China. Modern weddings in China are celebrated in a Western style, with little survived from ancient traditions and rituals. Therefore, Chinese brides are increasingly opting for white wedding dresses.
In ancient China, there were many wedding traditions, each action was meaningful and strictly regulated.Moreover, in different regions of China, wedding ceremonies could be very different, because China is a multinational country. Even among the representatives of the main nationality of the Celestial Empire, the Han, living in different provinces, the ceremonies could be very different.
Despite the differences, there were many similarities. The bride’s parents had to prepare a dowry and “invitation gifts”, which could contain various products and beautiful boxes with sweets. And the groom sent the wedding palanquin to the bride’s house and accompanied him himself.
At this time, the bride was dressed in a red wedding dress. Red in China symbolizes happiness. And sometimes Chinese brides chose the traditional dress for the tea ceremony as their wedding dress. White in Asian countries was the color of mourning, therefore a white wedding dress was unacceptable. Only in Japan did white symbolize purity and innocence.
The bride’s hair was carefully styled, her face was painted, and a wedding crown in the shape of a Phoenix bird was put on her head.The dragon and the Phoenix bird are two characters symbolizing the bride and groom, man and woman, as well as the emperor and empress. Therefore, the image of the phoenix was supposed to adorn the wedding cape, and sometimes it was embroidered on the dress.
Combining beautiful traditions and unique rituals at a Chinese wedding
Chinese wedding involves a complex ritual, which embodies a large number of traditions, rituals and ceremonies. First, the groom proposes, then the newlyweds are checked for compatibility according to the horoscope.Then the engagement takes place, the date of the wedding is chosen, wedding dresses and outfits are chosen and a solemn ceremony is held.
Chinese Bride Matching Tradition
During matchmaking, the groom’s family must invite a matchmaker, then the matchmaker, on the instructions of the seven groom, must come to the house where the bride lives to find out the birthday and the name of the bride. Such information is needed for an astrologer, who, according to the horoscope, will determine whether the bride and groom will be able to get married, and what their marriage will be like.Only after that, the girl can think about preparing for the celebration, about where she will look at wedding dresses and how she wants to look on her wedding day. In some families in China, a matchmaker comes to the bride’s house with gifts, such as cigarettes and a pack of tea.
Proposal for marriage in China
If the bride and groom are compatible according to the horoscope, and both parties agree to this marriage, then the groom’s family must send gifts before the engagement.These gifts may include jewelry made of silver or gold, as well as clothing and wedding jewelry.
Together with the gifts, they put a silver coin on which there is an inscription “qiu”, which means an offer. And the bride’s family, in turn, must send a coin where it says “yun” – this means that they agree. So both parties confirm their agreement.
Choosing a wedding date in China
A fortune-teller comes to the groom’s house to choose the desired date. The families will then begin preparations for the ceremony.When marrying a Chinese man, you should choose the right and auspicious date for your wedding. If you choose the wrong date, then the newlyweds may have misfortunes in the future. After the wedding day is determined, the wedding should be reported to the future relatives of the bride.
Chinese bride’s dowry
The groom’s family must send a letter to the bride’s family, in which it is required to send the bride’s dowry to decorate the room. If there is no dowry, then the wedding will not take place.The bride’s family in response should send a dowry, the quality of the dowry and the quantity will determine the status of the bride in the family of the future husband. According to tradition, scissors are included in the dowry, which look like two butterflies, they symbolize the warmth in the house. A vase is sent, it represents a symbol of peace, a pot of fruit that means fertility, and coins that speak of rich prosperity.
Chinese Wedding Tradition
The Chinese wedding is a lot of fun. On wedding days, the brides come to the groom’s house.Wedding corteges are accompanied by fireworks and fun. During the fun, unicorn or lion wedding dances are performed. It symbolizes goodwill, prosperity, good luck and business reputation.
In the house where the bride lived, the groom is given two sticks to eat. So they assume that sons will start faster. When the bride goes to the groom’s house, grain and rice are scattered in front of the bride. This means a symbol of fertility. Mirrors are attached to the back of the bride’s dresses. This will protect them from all evil spirits and other negative energy.When the bride crosses the threshold of her future husband, she must step over the saddle, because the Chinese translate saddle as peace.
According to tradition, if a girl marries a Chinese, she is presented with shoes and a bronze mirror with them, sometimes dresses are also presented, this has a beneficial effect on the future marriage.
When the bride comes in, she and the groom begin to bow to all the guests. These obeisances are necessary in order to obtain approval from the gods. But not only from the gods, but also from parents and ancestors, from all relatives and even neighbors.After which the bride and groom must enter their bridal chamber.
A bed for newlyweds before the wedding is set in one day by a person of luck, that is, a person who has many children. The correct symbols are laid out on the bed. For example, bran means there will be a rich son, peanuts and chestnuts – soon there will be a baby, pomegranate – fertility, lotus seeds and many other fruits. Children are also allowed to play on the bed.
A girl who married a Chinese man should drink with her husband wedding drinks, which consist of wine and honey in two cups tied together with a red cord.This symbol connects the bride and groom with an invisible silk thread. After the completion of the ceremony, all relatives and friends stay to celebrate until late at night.
Nowadays, weddings in China have changed a bit, combining some Eastern traditions and some Western ones. Now the bride is allowed to choose the wedding dress herself. Previously, her family chose the dress for the bride. Dresses can be made according to both Chinese and Western traditions. But mainly traditional red dresses are chosen, since in China red has always been considered the most cheerful color and brought people joy and happiness.
Special wedding photographers may be present at the wedding to photograph the entire celebration. And the photos can then be hung on the walls to decorate them, so that these photos remind the newlyweds of a happy celebration.
Previously, a bride who was married to a Chinese man was brought to the house of her future husband in a luxurious carriage; nowadays, wedding cars are used for this. It is decorated with flowers and the word happiness is written on the windows in red letters. When dinner begins, all family friends and relatives gather, they congratulate the newlyweds and hand them red envelopes containing money.The Chinese perceive the banquet as the most important ritual for their future life to be happy. Sometimes the banquet lasts three days. In the countries of the West, it is mainly about the parents, not the newlyweds.
Previously, the groom had to pay for the entire wedding, but now both families pay all costs. Previously, even the purchase of a dress was paid by the groom, and now brides buy dresses at their own expense.
Previously, when a girl marries a Chinese man, she must be Chinese, now there can be girls of any other nationality.
Chinese wedding banquet
The most difficult moment is when they make lists of guests who will be present at a wedding. The Chinese banquet is such an important event, sometimes the dishes are changed even up to 12 times. Dishes must be expensive and of high quality. This is the main rule of the banquet. Fish must be present on the table, it represents a symbol of abundance. Well, what is a wedding without liqueurs and wines, wines should be the most expensive in order to show guests all the wealth of the wedding and their families.
The guests are all sitting at a large round table, they are seated in a special way, the guests sitting next to them must necessarily know each other. Until the holiday has begun, all guests present have the right to play some wedding games, take pictures with the groom or the bride, or it is possible with both at once. During the celebration, traditionally, soup cooked with shark fins is served; one of the most respected men should make a toast or wishes to the newlyweds.
And the newlyweds, in turn, should thank each guest individually for the good wishes addressed to them and in return say their wishes to them.Women should have beautiful dresses, of course, red, but not more beautiful than the bride’s outfit. The bride should have the most beautiful appearance, no one should overshadow her beauty.
Friends begin to arrange various funny pranks so that the future husband shows all his love for his future wife. When the banquet begins to come to an end, the newlyweds, together with their relatives, begin to see off the guests at the door, moreover, each guest individually.
In the modern world, the Chinese do not always try to strictly observe all national traditions and sacred rituals, to choose exactly traditional dresses and outfits.But at any wedding, you can see some elements of even the most ancient customs.
Chinese traditions in general have changed a lot in relation to weddings, but the Chinese have preserved at least some of those old traditions. Although, in many other countries, traditions have completely changed, and there are not even any old customs, and China is the country where ancient traditions are respected and what their ancestors came up with.
It is worth noting that it is not in vain that they perform rituals that symbolize fertility. After all, China has the highest birth rate, which means that their superstition does not pass without a trace and helps them in fertility.The Chinese believe that thanks to these rituals, they have large families.
China wedding dress color
Wedding dresses around the world
The outfits of the bride and groom in many countries look completely different from what we are used to. In most modern countries, the bride wears a white dress for the wedding, and the groom wears a classic suit. Queen Victoria is rightfully considered the ancestor of the bride’s wedding dress. A triumphant breakthrough into the world of white wedding dress fashion occurred in 1840 thanks to the landmark wedding of the 19th century – Queen Victoria of England and Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha.Victoria’s luxurious dress was adorned with snow-white orange flowers, followed by a 5.5-meter train. However, there are still many places on Earth where the bride and groom wear traditional beautiful and unusual wedding dresses. Some cultures prefer colorful clothing and jewelry. According to national traditions, some brides paint their hands and faces before the ceremony, while others hide their faces behind thick veils.
Wedding dresses. China
The traditional color of a Chinese wedding is red.For centuries, Chinese brides have been dressed in kipao, a bright red silk dress with intricate gold embroidery. These loose, high-collared, long-sleeved dresses fall to the ground, leaving only the head, arms and legs exposed. During the ceremony, the bride often changes dresses to show the wealth of her family.
China wedding dress color
Fashion designers always follow fashion trends very closely. In 2009, they presented their most unusual works, to which they added a large number of elements of Chinese exoticism.Bright red is especially favored this season. The traditional Chinese style outfit has become a favorite of newlyweds again. Elements of traditional exoticism, for example, jewelry, patterns typical in old China, add beauty and tenderness to the bride.
When it comes to dressing in Chinese style, the traditional Qipao dress immediately comes to mind. You hardly know that earlier, during the ceremony of the wedding ritual, girls used to wear blouses and skirts – in Chinese called “chungua”.And today the old style of wedding “qungua” has already changed, so it can even better emphasize the attractiveness and slender figure of the bride. The quungua sewing operation is complex. Even for the simplest “quingua” embroidery, craftsmen need to spend two months.
Traditional patterns represent the elements of traditional Chinese exotic as much as possible. A number of the most popular Chinese classics can be seen in the works of the designers, such as the tree peony flower, dragon and phoenix.
For Chinese style wedding dress, designers mainly use silk, rayon, cotton fabric and brocade satin.And in comparison with other materials, brocade satin is the most popular among designers. Because the colors of this type of fabric seem to them more beautiful. Outfits made from such fabrics make the figures of women even slimmer and more beautiful. According to the designers, it is better for girls with a yellow complexion not to wear a purple dress. Red is more suitable for them. -0-
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Chinese national clothes: characteristic features
Since ancient times, travelers who have visited China have brought seemingly outlandish interior and household items, textiles.Chinese national clothes, silk fabrics embroidered with ornamental patterns, and accessories were in great demand. It is quite natural that later such elements appeared in the wardrobe of Europeans.
Features of the national Chinese costume
Clothing in China has its own individual characteristics, they create its distinctive and unique style. The most important are:
- sewing from natural textiles with a smooth structure with a shiny surface;
- laconic style, not overloaded with details in the form of pockets, stripes, assemblies;
- pronounced shades;
- Large number of hand-generated images;
- Suits have hemmed edges.
One of the main distinguishing features of Chinese traditional dress is the stand-up collar. This element is present on men’s shirts, dresses and blouses on women. Traditional Chinese clothing suits any occasion. Such an outfit will certainly be celebrated at the party.
The traditional male attire of a Chinese resident included trousers, called ku, and shirts. It was considered wrong to demonstrate the pants, they were made of ordinary hemp fabric, so they covered them with long outerwear.
The cut of the trousers was straight and loose enough, they had to be tied with a sash. Above, they put on products called taoku, which literally translates as “pants cover”, they were tied to the belt with a braid.
In winter, the Chinese wore a warmed version of trousers, and on top they wore thick taoku lined with cotton wool. The color scheme, as a rule, was soft, muted tones. Remarkable is the fact that Chinese trousers were prescribed to be worn at the waist.
The traditional dress of Chinese women provided for some kind of separation.Depending on belonging to a particular class, clothes were made from various types of fabrics. For example, middle-class women most often wore outfits made of cotton textiles or hemp. Members of the aristocracy and noble families preferred brightly colored silk, richly inlaid with precious stones and decorated with stylized embroidery.
China is a huge country with different climatic conditions. Thus, the northern territories were characterized by rather severe frosts, so residents had to wear more than one layer of clothing.
Traditional Chinese shirts are in demand far beyond China. They acquired their present appearance in the era of the ruling Tang dynasty and were called tangzhuang.
They were sewn from natural fabrics. Cut was distinguished by simplicity and severity. A robe or caftan was put over the shirt.
In general, there are three main features of this wardrobe item:
- stand-up collar;
- there is a horizontal fastener with a knot on the shirt floors in the middle part;
- monochrome or bright color.
Today you can buy a Chinese style shirt in absolutely any color. Solid or pastel shades are in great demand. In the past, men preferred bright shirts with a dominant red color, which symbolized courage and bravery. This wardrobe item was manually embroidered with patterns in accordance with national traditions.
Men’s dress was sewn from cotton or silk fabric. At the knee level, he had slits to facilitate movement.The sleeves were made long and wide enough. The color scheme was not attached to anything. As for the decor, it was only available to wealthy men.
French mao occupied a separate niche in the Chinese wardrobe. Its pattern is very simple and at the same time looks strict. The jacket had four pockets and a collar turned down, fastened with five buttons. In a relatively short period of time, men began to wear it throughout the country.
Clothing for the beautiful half of China has always been distinguished by a wide variety.However, even today some of its features can be traced:
- dresses, skirts, suits, trousers and jackets are distinguished by a narrowed cut and are equipped with side slits;
- blouses and jackets adorned with traditional knot loop closure, the same elements are present on men’s garments;
- Women’s casual wardrobe has a simple design, making the image sophisticated and elegant, with the exception of wedding decoration.
Chinese traditional costume cannot be called a universal product, like most garments of other peoples.China promotes grace and femininity, which is why such clothes are more suitable for fragile ladies. Nevertheless, modern designers create more versatile models based on the national dress.
The traditional dress of Chinese women is called qipao. As a rule, it has a strict straight cut with a stand-up collar. The attire is a neat blend of modesty and seductiveness. This effect is achieved thanks to the form-fitting cut and small cuts on the sides that expose the legs.Hollywood celebrities pay special attention to such dresses, demonstrating outfits in a truly Chinese cut at premieres and social events.
Qipao appeared in one of the provinces of China – Manchuria. Initially, it was a loose-fitting elongated robe with small slits on the side and long sleeves. There was no grace in the outfit, it looked more like a hoodie. Later, with the trend of European fashion, a sheath dress with its characteristic oriental flavor was created.
Stand-up collar and side slits remain unchanged.
Modern fashion offers qipao not only maxi or midi, but also mini. It can be worn as a separate wardrobe item and combined with tight trousers, acting as a tunic. Such an outfit is perfect for daily wear and for an evening out. When choosing a dress, special attention should be paid to the fabric. If it is dense and natural silk, the product will not stretch even with frequent wear.
Traditional wedding dress in China is a very sophisticated and sophisticated dress in bright red color.Usually they embroider it with gold threads. Locals believe that the joint use of these two colors promises wealth and prosperity for the spouses.
In the northern provinces of China, wedding dress has a form-fitting cut and a sewn-in stand-up collar is a tradition. In the south of the country, the outfit is represented by a fitted jacket and a surprisingly large number of skirts worn on top of each other.
A traditional skirt in China is called plakhta. Initially, only representatives of the wealthy classes could wear this wardrobe item.Poor strata did not put on a block. Over time, the skirt is excluded from everyday attire and becomes part of a festive or ceremonial costume, so women wore it only on special occasions.
In ancient China, there was also a male block – shan, it was worn by the warriors of the emperor.
Skirts of both sexes consisted of two rectangular fabric cuts sewn to a wide belt. Outwardly, they looked more like an apron with a panel not only in front, but also in the back. Skirts were sewn from yellow and red fabric.These colors in China are symbols of earth and fertility, so this wardrobe item was most often decorated with embroidery depicting grains.
The traditional part of the Chinese women’s costume is a mandarin jacket. Modern business women often choose it for its original ethnic ornament and comfortable cut. Distinctive features of a mandarin jacket are loose, straight cut, wide sleeves, the presence of a stand-up collar or its absence. The jacket is made of lightweight fabric with a lining.Traditional style emphasizes femininity and sophistication.
The Chinese robe was sewn exclusively from natural silk and was part of the wardrobe of women from noble families. As a rule, it was decorated with colorful images, embroidery and stones.
One of the varieties of clothing is a kimono – a robe that is wrapped on the right side. It is considered a traditional dress for geisha and maiko.
Since ancient times in China, great importance has been attached to the first clothes of a child.A pregnant Chinese woman sewed an outfit for a baby with her own hands. The undershirt was made of thin cotton fabric. The fabric from which Chinese costumes for children were sewn must certainly be part of the clothes worn by their relatives. It was believed that it develops spirituality and promises a person a long life. From the age of 6, children wore traditional clothes similar to those of adult models.
According to Chinese etiquette, men were required to walk with their heads covered.Young men wore metal caps until they came of age. If the young man was from a noble family, the Chinese national headdress was made using precious stones. Having reached their 20th birthday, men wore the same object on their heads as the older generation. There were several types of this decoration: a felt cap, a cloth hat, a cone hat decorated with an ornament, a bamboo hat, tou jin.
The Chinese emperor had the privilege of wearing a multi-layered headdress.
Accessories and footwear
It is very difficult to imagine the traditional Chinese folk dress without various accessories and peculiar shoes. Every detail mattered. Both men’s and women’s suits were decorated with accessories. Mature women often wore wigs. Representatives of the aristocracy did complex hairstyles, decorating them with wooden hairpins, dressed crosswise. Products made from mineral stones and natural materials were in great demand.
Shoes were black cloth shoes. Rich people wore silk shoes on a wooden lacquered platform, peasants wore woven sandals.
Fabrics and designs
Chinese silk is a fabric that has been revered throughout the world since ancient times. It was believed that if you constantly wear silk clothes, you can get rid of many diseases. In addition, linen, bamboo, hemp and cotton fabrics were used for sewing the wardrobe.
Clothes of any country have their own unique symbols; in China, these are patterns and images of plants and representatives of the animal world.The inhabitants of the Celestial Empire believe that the decoration with appliqué and ornamentation on products protects against enemies and bad thoughts. So, a butterfly in flight symbolizes immortality, a bamboo drawing personifies resilience, a turtle – longevity. Among all the images, the lotus flower and dragon are especially revered, which are considered sacred.
As before, the color scheme in Chinese clothes has a special meaning, each shade means something. Red is a symbol of the power of fire and the sun; residents dressed up in outfits of this color for solemn and festive events.Shades of blue foreshadowed failure, people wore white clothes in mournful moments. Yellow was considered a symbol of peace, tranquility and power. Green was a sign of life and awakening. Only people of wealthy estates could have a wardrobe of bright colors. The clothes of Chinese peasants were sewn from pastel-colored fabrics.
Nowadays many people like the way the Chinese dress. In a nutshell, their casual, modern clothing is simplicity and elegance.Traditional shirts of a straight cut are especially popular among men, while girls prefer straight dresses. Only a stand-up collar, loop fasteners and side slits remained from the national costume. Along with silk, knitwear is often used for sewing.
Business people often complement their look with a modified mandarin jacket, which has no gender characteristics. Unlike the traditional version, it is slightly cropped and lacks wide sleeves. Modern clothing models are presented in a variety of cut and color options, they are united by their laconicism and elegance of the image.
Useful tips from stylists
Chinese-style dresses are not suitable for everyone. When choosing, it is worth starting from the individual characteristics of the figure. So, a qipao made of silk with a short sleeve will hide broad shoulders and emphasize beautiful arms. Long dress is not recommended for small girls. For those with a long neck, a qipao with a high collar is suitable.
For women with a magnificent bust, a dress in the Chinese style will help to emphasize the forms without making the image vulgar.The midi length qipao with small side cutouts balances the proportions of the triangle figure.
It is not necessary to fully dress in Chinese attire, these clothes go well with the usual wardrobe items. For example, a qipao blouse ideally complements trousers or a classic-cut skirt, and a sheath dress harmoniously matches a mandarin jacket.
Clothes in the national Chinese style are completely incompatible with high heels and a platform. The best option would be shoes with medium heels or flat soles, sandals and sandals with many straps.
Traditional Chinese Clothing | Mandarin School Language Center
What do you think about when you hear the word “China”? Surely an image of a red communist flag with yellow stars, skyscrapers made of banknotes, pandas, a Chinese wall, well, or a bunch of identical people in panamas on Red Square will appear in your head. You certainly can’t go wrong thinking about all this, but if you think a little harder, you will surely remember the delicate flowing Chinese silk as well.
Everyone who has already applied for a trip to China, we have added to our training calendar for the trip.
We will call you back quickly and answer all questions
Already in the 3rd century BC. The far-sighted Chinese people began to grow silkworm worms at home, obtain from them a strong, light and smooth thread, sew fabrics, embroider paintings, make strings for musical instruments, bowstrings for hunting and military bows, and even produce paper. And during the Han Dynasty (206 BC.NS. – 220 AD) silk became a universal monetary equivalent, yes, taxes at that time were paid not only with grain, but also with fine silk, this fabric, by the way, served as a salary for officials at the court. Silk clothing was prized for its warmth, beauty, durability and incredible lightness, but such outfits were available for a long time only to the rich. Silkworms could not be taken out of China under any pretext, and even more so to talk about the intricacies of thread production aloud to anyone, for violation of these prohibitions from the windows of the ruling court came the decree: “head off your shoulders!”But, whatever one may say, you can’t hide an awl in a sack, once the Byzantine emperor managed to buy out magic mulberry worms from visiting monks, so the whole Byzantine Empire and Asia Minor learned about silk. And in Russia, a delicate thread of silk was mastered only in the 16th century. Soon, along with porcelain and tea, silk became a visiting card of the great Celestial Empire.
Of course, there are many legends about how the Chinese themselves recognized a gold mine in mulberry larvae. But there is one of the most famous: the great “Yellow Emperor” had a beautiful wife who loved to tea in her blooming garden, where a mulberry tree gave a wonderful shade for outdoor recreation.Once several leaves from a spreading tree flew into her porcelain cup, on these very leaves there were silkworm cocoons, when the empress’s thin arms began to catch unwelcome guests, the cocoons began to unwind into a fluffy long thread. Wasting no time, the empress unwound all the cocoons from the mulberry tree and wove a soft and delicate fabric from which she ordered the great Huangdi to sew clothes. The emperor was in love with the new dress and immediately ordered the development of the production of thread and silk fabric, and so it all began.
Records about silk were found among the oracular Yin inscriptions in the 2nd millennium BC, even then it was mentioned about the mulberry tree, silkworms and fabric. More than two hundred hieroglyphs that have come down to us from antiquity include the key 丝 sī “silk” (eg: 织 zhī to weave; 纺 fǎng to spin, weave; 组 zǔ braid, ribbon, etc.).
Over time, the production of silk fabric increased, its quality improved, there were countless types of silk products, and it was in honor of the bright and rich fabric that the great trade “Silk Road” was named.
National Chinese clothing 汉 服 hànfú, hanfu or in translation – “clothing of the Han dynasty”, namely in this era the national Chinese costume was born, was also made of colored high-quality silk. On holidays, silk was dyed in gold and red, richly decorated with embroidery and precious stones, white silk clothes were worn during mourning ceremonies, and yellow could only be found in the robes of the imperial family. Hanfu was always distinguished by restraint and only in the Tang era (618-690) became known for his splendor and was considered very luxurious.Over the centuries, from dynasty to dynasty, the Chinese national dress underwent significant changes, during the Song (960 – 1279) and Ming (1368 – 1644) periods, Hanfu became an elegant and sophisticated outfit of light colors. The female hanfu was called 襦 裙 rúqún, zhuqun, and it was a fluffy skirt with a wide sweatshirt in a half-cut.
After the overthrow of the monarchy in the middle of the 20th century, the national dress of women of the Celestial Empire became modest, but no less attractive, ott袍 qípáo, qipao, which originated under the Manchus in the form of a long women’s dress with a standing collar and a wide right hem.The first qipao were very simple cut, sewn from cheap fabrics, had five buttons and a slit in the front, but rich ladies could afford luxurious qipao made of fine silk of the brightest and most expensive colors.
Of course, it was clear that the refined qipao during the “interesting situation” of Chinese women did not fit because of the narrow cut and wide trousers with an oblique seam on the side and a shirt became the second national costume, such clothes did not have buttons and fasteners and women believed that no evil spirit will be able to disturb the nascent life, for it will not be able to sneak through the clothes.In modern China, qipao is still popular and not a single wedding photo shoot is complete without a national dress. In stores in large cities, you can often find a qipao of a more businesslike style, suitable for office work. In addition to qipao, blouses with knot buttons of characteristic colors with embroidery in the form of dragons or national patterns, jackets with a high collar and vests of soft and elegant cut are popular.
Male hanfu consisted of 裤 kù pants, ku and a long wide shirt; over the pants, Chinese men wore 套裤 tàokù, a taoku attached to his pants with a thin string, it was a kind of “trouser cover”, since according to the rules of etiquette men’s pants were not supposed to be are visible.
But, for sure, this suit is not at all associated with Chinese men, the whole world is more familiar with 中山装 zhōngshānzhuāng, a men’s jacket or “sunyatsenovka”, similar to a military jacket, popular in China until the 90s of the 20th century. The tunic is often called “Mao’s French” because the Great Helmsman wore it. The example of this famous man’s attire was the Japanese cadet’s tunic, which at one time was worn by Sun Yat-sen. At the end of the 20s of the last century, Zhongshanzhuang served as the official uniform for members of the government and officials, five buttons, symbolizing the five branches of the Chinese government, were proudly illuminated in it, there are versions that five buttons were a reference to the five main peoples of the Celestial Empire: Han, Manchus, Uyghuram , Mongols and Tibetans.French had four patch pockets and, of course, a stand-up collar. Three buttons on the cuffs of the tunic were related to the “Three People’s Principles of Sun Yat-sen”: nationalism, democracy and popular welfare. Today, the tunic, modified and adapted to modern realities, has been adopted by the CCP as the official form of the People’s Liberation Army.
Of course, the national footwear of China deserves special attention. Chinese women’s shoes, for example, have never been comfortable since the 10th century AD. girls, even at a young age, bandaged their feet, leaving the big toe outside, it was called the “golden lotus”, and the other four were bent and tied tightly, gradually, the foot was deformed and after a couple of years the process of reducing the foot was considered complete, the woman received a tiny foot for tiny shoes with pretentious embroidery, which I could not walk at all.Women were inspired by Western ballerinas with small feet. Shoes with such deformed feet had a triangular shape, were sewn from silk and decorated in every possible way. Boots with thick wooden soles and men’s boots made of stiff fabric were also popular.
In Ancient China, a headdress was also a mandatory attribute; young people who had not reached the age of majority were obliged to wear a small metal cap, which was decorated in every possible way, demonstrating the wealth of the family of its owner.Emperors wore 冕 miǎn, a crown or ceremonial headdress, which had a symbolic meaning and must have been present on the head of dignitaries during ceremonies and rituals.
Of course, one cannot fail to mention the triangular reed peasant hat 耘 笠 yúnlì, which protected the working people from the hot sunlight during agricultural work in open areas. Chinese women, unlike men, did not wear headdresses. Only for the wedding ceremony did the bride wear 凤冠 fèngguān, a ceremonial headdress decorated with phoenix decorations.In ordinary times, in ancient China, all sorts of magnificent jewelry, beads to the floor, chains and metal hairpins with various carvings in the form of flowers and birds, inlaid with gems or precious stones, decorated with natural flowers and feathers, were popular in ancient China. Wealthy ladies often wore silk or animal hair wigs.
Chinese national costume may well be considered a separate art form, since each element of the attire was thought out in detail, decorated and laid, so far, the history museums of China attract tourists from all over the world to their showcases with incredibly luxurious silk robes preserved literally in their original form by noble Chinese families.