Traditional Fashions in Yemen


Yemeni folklore is special and distinct as it contains many life aspects of the Yemeni people. This heritage is still standing up to now, where we see the beauty and splendor of its multiple forms likethe popular women's traditional fashions, which images are still reflected in villages and rural areas of Yemen,constituted bythe beautiful traditional fashions that are still very popular despite the progress and evolution of life, as theiraesthetic character and accurate industry will make of them an immortal treasure.

Said Nadia Al-Fakih, who is an expert in women's Yemeni fashion:  Among these women's traditional fashions is the Dawanidress wearing by inland areas women with a Hadrami belt over it.This dress is worn on special occasions like weddings and considered asthe traditional women's fashion in Hadramout and Dawan, in addition to the  silver belt and anklet.

There is also  the San'aanidress which worn by women of Sana'a and its surrounding areas. It is a component of a dress called «Al-Zannah» and «Al-Massar» which placed on the head and decorated with ornaments and silver-called «Al-Raash». While the San'aani children dress is consist of:

Al-Zannah: It is short dress with which an underneath short embroidered from below is worn, while placed on the heada headscarf called « Karkosh », and this is what differentiates between married womenand young single girls.

There is also the Shihridress which is worn by women of the coastal cities, and it isnamed is attribute to Shihrcity in Hadramout. This dressis worn by women of Mukalla, Gail Bawazir, Shihr, Mahi andBarrom.This dress comeslong from the front and short from behind andmade of branched velvet cloth with motifs anda collarembroidered witha shape of an eye. It isworn during the second day after marriage with a fan made of palm fronds, and a small and light silver belt.

There is also a dress called «Dir'» which isa light cloth worn by women of Tehama and south areas while sitting at home or in normal visits.

There is also a womendress called «Al-Thawb Al-Mujayyab» and worn by women in the cities of Yon,Kunynah, Mamedah andHijrin Hadramout. It consists of four piecesembroidered with colored strings and some silver, and worn with a small belt.

There also the Sayounidress attributed to the city of Sayoun. This dress is worn by  young women together with a large silver belt called «Al-Hakki», while old women wear it with a small belt of silver.

Among the bride's dressing up is the Yemeni Jasmine, which is placed around the neck, where placed more than two necklaces of Jasmine on the bride's neck whose face is covered even among women, and her face is anointed with yellow «turmeric» which is famous among women in Hadramout.

There are also the Tarani, which is atraditional dress worn by women of Tihama areas as they are carrying their work on the farms, and consists of skirt,bra, Scarf and a hat of fronds to protect them from the sun's heat.

Clothes of Sana'a: The famous historian, IbnKhaldun, has pointed in his book "Al-Mokaddimah" that Yemenis have been known with leather tanning since the ancient ages, and there were thirty-three tanneries in the city of Sana'a during the fourth century AH, in addition to mills that producerugs,hairy and normal slippers, bags that keeps watermade of the wool of goats, sheep and camels. Also, women of Sana'a were famous by their handy knitting and spinning of clothes with both Hemyarite and Persian styles, and among the most important industries by which Sana'a was characterized is textiles made of wool, linen and cotton out of which many traditional fashions are produced. There are also garmentsmade of  silk and linen, among which the "Saeedi of Sana'a" was the most famous, in addition to indescribable "Sakri " and "Satt" clothes that made of  hard water-proof  textiles. Not only this, but Sana'a was also famous of producing socks, pants and veils.

Yemeni Blazers and textiles of Tihama , Hadramout and Lahj were the most popular Yemen fashion products in the Arabian markets, but they dwindled with the passage of time includingthosehand-made fashions that were worn by the clergymen.It issupposed, instead of disappearing, to get those fashions become a part of the costume or uniform forofficers or school students.This way, we can serve our heritage and save it.