Western dress had been either forbidden or frowned upon during the nineteenth century. During the Heian period — C. These robes were fastened either down the middle or across the right side of the chest, but never across the left. The exact cut and style of these robes changed significantly over the course of Chinese history. Chinese costume has always been characterized by a deep respect for conventions and for the symbolism of certain colors and decorations. The new government, which controls China to this day, favored a basic garment called a Mao suit named after the Communist leader Mao Tse-tung [—] , with plain trousers and a tunic with a mandarin collar and two pockets on the chest.
By the time of the Qing dynasty — C. The material preferred by members of the upper classes was silk. Samurai Archives. Spun by silk worms that lived in mulberry trees, silk was a rich, soft fabric that was treasured for its sheen and its comfort.
The basic Japanese garments were the kosode, a short-sleeved shirt that opened in front, and the hakama, or long trousers. Japan borrowed many Chinese customs, including rule by emperors, growing rice, the Buddhist religion, and many clothing traditions, including the wearing of robes for the wealthy and trousers and simple tunics for the poor. In the twentieth century most Japanese people adopted Western dress, such as trousers and suits for men and skirts and blouses for women, for their everyday wear, but traditional dress remained a very important part of their culture, worn for important events like weddings and funerals. As China modernized in the last twenty years of the twentieth century, some Western dress began to appear, but for many the Mao suit remained the common garment for daily wear. Japanese Costume: History and Tradition.
Early Asian Cultures Cheongsam. Differences in language and culture have made studying Asian cultures difficult for Western historians. Toggle navigation. Ancient Chinese dress Organized societies emerged in China as early as B. By the time of the Qing dynasty — C. Oriental clothing can be worn at parties as costumes, as evening gowns or cocktail outfits, at weddings, at work in offices and even as everyday casual wear.