China has 5000 years of cultural history,  what is the ancient Chinese clothing looks like that always curiously by foreigners. 

Each region always has its own characteristics, such as traditional clothes. Likewise, with the Chinese.

Even every Chinese New Year celebration, they will buy or make types of clothing of ancient Chinese people.

Ancient Chinese Clothing

As an ethnic group, the Chinese have various kinds of uniqueness, such as the use of traditional clothes every certain special day.

In addition, wearing new traditional clothes is considered capable of warding off bad luck and protecting oneself from evil spirits.

They are even willing to save and bless throughout the year so that when they celebrate Chinese New Year, they can buy new clothes and take care of themselves.

Traditions like this have been deeply embedded in society and have existed since the Sung Dynasty (960-1279 AD).

In this case, they will be more confident and go to the homes of friends and relatives to show off their respective styles.

However, starting from 1912-1949, the function of using this traditional dress changed to a form of respect for young people to their parents.

As one of the big countries with the most population, it cannot be denied that many Chinese people still live below standard.

In addition, the ethnic group of this nation has clothes that are often used by the poor.

Traditional Chinese clothing, more precisely for ethnic Chinese who still live below the standard, is called Hwa Kun.

This clothing is generally worn by women and has a simple shape with a curtain covering the face.

Clothes of the Poor in Ancient China

As one of the big countries with the most population, it cannot be denied that many Chinese people still live below standard.

Besides, in the ethnicity of this nation, there are clothes that are often used by the poor, including:

  1. Hwa Kunhwa kun

Traditional Chinese clothing, more precisely for ethnic Chinese who still live below the standard, is called Hwa Kun.

This clothing is generally worn by women and has a simple shape with a curtain covering the face.

This woman’s ancient Chinese clothing consists of a blouse with a skirt-shaped bottom so that it looks feminine to the wearer.

Besides, this shirt is more often used for official events and is a blend of Chinese and Betawi (Indonesian) ethnicities.

  1.  Koko shirtkako shirt

It seems that when you look at Koko clothes, you must be synonymous with a diverse Muslim community.

Maybe even think that this outfit comes from Arabia even though the clothes are a combination of Chinese and Betawi ethnicities.

This Koko shirt is often used by poor Chinese people with a combination of trousers. In addition, the way to use it is also equipped with a hat that is similar to a cap so that it becomes a fitting unit.

Even today, many are used as ancient Chinese clothing for children.

Types of Ancient Chinese Traditional Clothing 

There are many kinds of clothing for ancient Chinese people. You may not even know some of them because what is famous is only the Cheongsam.

However, it turns out that there are at least 15 types of traditional clothes. The following is the explanation:

  1. Hanfuhan fu

Actually, like other countries, China also has several ethnicities in its territory.

Each also has its own characteristics like this traditional Hanfu dress, which comes from the Han ethnicity and is often used to celebrate various holidays and official events.

This outfit has a unique and beautiful shape, similar to Hanbok from Korea.

The neck will look like petals while the bottom is an elongated skirt. For the arm itself, it is made loose.

Unfortunately, this type of clothing is rarely worn by Chinese society.

The Hanfu clothes have even inspired several Asian countries, especially Korea and Japan.

Also, Hanfu is also an ancient Chinese clothing for children to adults.

  1. Cheongsam旗袍qi pao

Qipao is ancient Chinese clothes that the Chinese government used to force people to wear.

However, they named this new version of the Cheongsam. Starting from coercion, this traditional dress has become the most popular and in-demand form.

The most interesting thing about this Cheongsam is that it always changes with the times.

For now, the most popular form is the high collar with short sleeves. In addition, the body is made straight and slender, equipped with Chinese embroidery.

Generally, this Cheongsam outfit is only for women. Then if you turn to the present, you will often meet Chinese people, especially those who work in restaurants and hotels, many of which wear these clothes for uniforms.

  1. Samfusamfu

Samfu is typical Chinese clothing that is used in everyday life.

However, this traditional dress is more popular with middle-aged women and men for just at home or even as the clothes of ancient Chinese peasants.

Samfu is more commonly made from Chinese satin with a variety of unique accessories and embroidery.

This shirt is characterized by a high collar with buttons and long sleeves. Even though it is an everyday outfit, Chinese citizens of Malay descent rarely wear it.

Chinese people often make Samfoo from hemp and cotton.

Meanwhile, the upper-class people preferred to make ancient Chinese clothes from silk.

The manufacture itself is a little complicated, and usually, each family will weaving it themselves.

  1. Shanghai Tangshanghai tang

As one of the traditional Chinese clothes, Shanghai clothes have a characteristic that is almost similar to the Cheongsam.

It’s just that the shape is more authentic, but for now, it’s been packaged into a more modern style with a high collar style and the shape of the side buttons.

In addition, the collar also distinguishes between Cheongsam and Shanghai clothes with a higher shape.

Then the front parted. The people themselves when choosing the colors to use these clothes according to the season at that time.

For example, the color white for autumn. Red symbolizes hot weather while black is worn when entering the rainy season. Shanghai itself is ancient Chinese clothing for women.

  1. Changshanchang pao

Changshan is actually the partner of the Cheongsam outfit. Because it is ancient Chinese clothing for men of Chinese ethnicity, while the Cheongsam is for women.

The shape seems formal, so it is often used for various official events and celebrations of big holidays.

This clothing itself has a characteristic that is intended for middle and upper-class Chinese men.

Even in the 17-20th century, the Chinese government again forced its people to wear it, and if it violated, it would be punished. But now these regulations no longer exist.

Even so, until now, this custom is still strong, namely Changshan clothes only for the high-profile.

Then the characteristic is that his clothes are always bright red, like the Chinese belief regarding luck, happiness, and hope.

  1. Tang SuitTang suit

Tang Suit is a traditional Chinese clothing that was introduced during the Tang dynasty.

At first, these clothes were very loose in shape because it emphasized the ease of movement.

However, over time, the clothing styles also changed but still had their own characteristics.

This shirt is actually a form of display of traditional Chinese knots with materials from brocade and luxurious fabrics that originate from ancient times.

If you are a fan of Chinese films, maybe you are familiar with this outfit because Jackie Chan is one of the actors who often wears it.

  1. ManchuManchu

Manchu is traditional clothing to replace Hanfu or also known as Jurchen, during the Qi dynasty in 1644-1911.

At first, this garment was often worn with pairs of pot shoes because people at that time thought that small feet were more attractive.

They even practice tying their feet to keep them small, but this is even more torturous, so they stop.

Then along with the times, the Manchu clothes also began to be replaced and replaced with western-style clothes.

  1. Tangzhuang唐装Tang zhuang lady

Tangzhuang has a form of clothing that combines traditional Chinese elements with more modern western-style cutting techniques.

This clothing was introduced during the Tang Dynasty from 618 to 907 AD. However, for now, the clothes have changed with the times.

In addition, Tangzhuang is more often used as a couple of clothes with symmetrical shapes and high collars.

Then what is characteristic is that the buttons on the clothes are like a frog’s knot and are made by hand.

Generally, the materials used are silk and brocade fabrics.

However, for now, Tangzhuang’s version of clothing has been mixed with western styles.

This can be seen from the shoulders, which are padded so that the clothes look more comfortable and fit when they are worn.

  1. Zhongshan中山装zhong shan zhuang

Zhongshan jacket, or better known as Jas Mao, is one of the traditional Chinese clothes that has been integrated with western culture.

This shirt was introduced to the public in the nineteenth century and is often used for big events and special day celebrations.

This dress was even introduced by the People’s Republic of China’s former leader, namely Mao Zedong.

Also, the form itself is also like a service in general, but only has the characteristics of the Chinese nation.

This Zhongshan suit itself is an adaptation of Mao’s suit.

In addition, it is the people of western China who wear clothes the most. usually, they will also mix and match with baggy pants.

  1. Du Dou 肚兜Du Dou

Dudou is a type of bra that is often worn by ancient Chinese people and was first introduced during the Qing dynasty.

At that time, this outfit sounded a little “weird” because it was used to flatter a woman’s chest to look more elegant.

Because at that time, women looked more beautiful and elegant if they had a flat chest.

At the same time, the protruding form was considered too seductive, so that people at that time outsmarted it by using Dudou.

The Min dynasty from 1368 to 1644 was the nation that introduced this tradition.

In addition, the shape of Dodou itself is like an apron and is made of silk which has a square shape and functions to cover the chest and stomach.

  1. Ru Qun襦裙ru qun

Ruqun itself is a term for a garment, which means “Ru” or a shirt, and “Quran,” which means skirt.

The Ruqun dress is an adaptation of the song style during the ancient dynasty.

This shirt combines various concepts such as a shirt with a skirt that is wrapped around the body.

Then on the outside, it is equipped with a Beizi or long jacket with a straight collar. Initially, the Ruqun dress came as a form of adaptation of the Song dynasty to the ideas of modesty from Confucianism.

But still able to give a simple and closed impression.

When a woman wears these clothes, it will give a feminine impression.

In general, women in the past, when wearing these clothes, always styled their hair with patterns so that they could give a graceful and polite charm.

Most Popular Chinese Clothing

When looking at a variety of traditional Chinese clothing, it looks almost entirely similar. However, it has its own characteristics.

In addition, some clothes are the most popular and often the choice of the Chinese community, namely:

  1. Cheongsam

Cheongsam is the clothes most favored by various ethnic Chinese and even nations from other countries. This is because the clothing model is more flexible so that it can be used for various formal events or not.

Apart from that, the shape is simple, but it already represents and contains the essence of China. These clothes themselves are generally made with various bright colors and floral and other motifs. The making is now more modern and easy.

  1. Changsan

As previously discussed, the Cheongsam is traditional Chinese clothing that is often worn by men. This model dress is just as popular as the Cheongsam. It’s just more popular among men.

Chinese people often choose this outfit because it is more flexible and can be used for various official events, such as Chinese New Year celebrations, and to attend weddings.

They now prefer to mix and match traditional clothes with a more modern style.

Author: Enjoy Shanghai

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