Dress, or adornment culture is a culture formed in the course of protecting people’s bodies and beautifying their Images. Dress culture is characterized by distinctive development stages. Nowadays, the dress and adornments , even separate parts of garments, can find their prototype in ancient dress. From the Wei dynasty to the South and North dynasty , China was in a period of ethic merging. The dress of this period was characterized by diversified styles and obsolescence. Skirt-wearing was a fashion among women in the Tang Dynasty. There have been different customs between men’s dress and women’s dress in China.
There have been different customs between men’s dress and women’s dress in China. Originally, dress did not symbolize social status , but the, situation changed after class polarization. People usually wore different clothes on different occasions.
Ceremonial dress differs from practical dress as it only taters to the needs of social etiquette such as the mourning dress in ancient China, a purely ceremonial dress.
The development of chinese clothing
Chinese clothing saw a rapid development during the Wei, Jin, and Southern and Northern dynasties (220- 589). Some time before 265, the cultures and esthetic views of the peoples in north and south China merged because of the moves initiated by frequent wars. Many philosophical schools of thought influenced both people’s lives and the conceptions of clothing design.
The Tang Dynasty (618—907) wrote the most brilliant page in the history of Chinese clothing. People’s clothes were more varied than before because the state was more open to the outside world and people became more cosmopolitan in their thinking. The clothes for women could be called fashionable because they changed rapidly and were showy. When a new style came out, many people took to it.
About Clothes Texture
Clothes are different not because of lheir style and design, but because of the cloth texture too. With the development of silk dyeing industry, silk clothing is various in color and so they are called in many ways, such as “绢(iuan), 缣(iian), 素(su), 纨(wan), 纱(sha), 绡(xlao) , 绸(chou), 罗( luo) “, etc. These words tell how silk are made and dyed in various ways and, at the same time, show also the class difference when people are dressed in different silk.
Different Kinds of Ancient Clothes
Since remote ages, people usually wore different clothes on different occasions. So far as individual clothes wasconcemed, there were civilian clothes, working suit, ceremonial dress. And there were different ceremonial dress on different ceremonial occasions-such as wedding dress, mouming apparel, etc. Different clothes were also worn in different weathers such as urnbrella, parasols, alpine rush rain capes and bamboo hats. The dress custom defined by different occasions also restrained people’s behavior in their daily life. If people wore inappropriate, they might incurs blames for their inconsistency vvith customs. Changes occurred to the uses of this dress, such as a special rain cape and bamboo hats called suoyi and douil. The former used to be a rainproof cape, but later as it was mainly wom by fishermen, it gradually evolved info the career symbol of fishermen. The latter used to be a heat stroke proof utensils, later it was also used for rainproof.
Clothes and Wearer’s Position
Clothing in ancient China told something about the wearer’s position in their daily life. The color, fabric, and jewelry all had a meaning to the person. Also the type of jewelry a person wore showed what position they had in SOCiety. High ranking people wore the finest silk in pUblic. Peasants wore a long ,shirt like garment made of hemp fiber. Hemp is a rough fabric that is made of plant fibers. A man wore a hat in public almost always. The hat showed the man’s job and status in society. Fashions for the rich changed as the years went by, but the poor still had to wear the same clothing until recently. Women’s long hair had to be put in a knot type bun thing that the Chinese called a topknot that wos held in place by hair pins and other fancy hair ornaments. Also the wealthiest women wore very elaborate makeup.
The Change of Chinese Garments
Before the 1920s, women’s garments remained two-piece, with little difference from Qing Dynasty garments. Shortly after the Revolution of 1911, as more Chinese students studied in Japon, the influence of Japanese women’s wear on young Chinese women could be seen in a narrow, long blouse with a high collar and a long black skirt. Known as “modem garments, “these clothes were accompanied by little jewelry.
In the 1920s, Chinese women started to be conscious of “the beauty of curvaceousness, “and traditional straight, loose garments were replaced by close-fitting ones. Women of that period wore blouses narrow at the waistline, with small stand-up collars, sleeves reaching the elbows, and a curving hemline. The blouses were decorated on the collar, sleeves, front and hem. The skirts, which earlier hod been pleated and reached the feet, were not pleated and shorter, though the hem still fell below the knees. The skirts were also decorated along the hem, sometimes with colorful, sparkling jewelry.
The general characteristics of the early OiPao were a single piece of cloth that would cover the whole body, down to the feet. Around the neck, the collar would be high to help secure outfit. The materials was loose, with slits on the side only allow for easier movement.
While the Oing Dynasty fell, the center of Chinese fashion become Shanghai, where the Western influence was the highest. It was there that the form of OiPao we see most commonly today: slender fit and shorter sleeves, with two big slits at each side of the hem, for convenient movement, but now wonderfully display the slender legs of women. Simplicity is one of its features from the collar, loop, chest, waist and hips to the lower hem. OiPao almost varies with a woman’s figure. Practicality always goes with beauty. like a Chinese woman’s temperament. OiPoo is elegant and gentle.