Traditional Chinese clothes

China is a very big country, so traditional clothing depended on the weather in a particular area as well as the job some did and his or her family background. Tunics, like long shirts, were very popular clothing for men and women. Women’s tunics were longer, all the way down to the ankles. When it got cold out people also wore jackets and pants. Most people’s clothing was made from a fiber called hemp but rich people used softer smoother silk. By the 13th century, cotton was more common in China and more people were able to make their clothes from this material.

Probably the most recognized types of traditional Chinese clothing are the pienfu, the changpao, and the shenyi. The pienfu is a costume used for ceremonies that has a long top and ankle-length pants or skirts. The changpao was more like a robe and was made out of just one piece of cloth. The shenyi was a top and pants or skirt, but they were sewn together to make just one piece of clothing instead of two. In the 20th century, the cheongsam became a common dress that women all over the world copied.

Today many Chinese people who live in cities and larger towns prefer to wear Western clothes like dresses, skirts, blouses/shirts, and pants. Most clothing is still dark in color, but red represents luck in China so it is worn at important ceremonies like weddings. White is still sometimes worn to Chinese funerals.


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