Ethnic clothing

OK, I’m as American looking as they come (though I’m half Mexican). Blonde hair, blue eyes, all that razamataz.

Ever since I went away to university, I’ve been exposed to styles of dress that you just don’t see in suburbia. College campuses tend to have more ethnic flavor, and people tend to be more open with their dress.

In particular, I’ve noticed, I don’t know what the term should be, Muslim or Arab or whatever, clothing. It seems to look very comfortable. The long very loose shirts and all. I guess stuff like this or [url=http://www.shukronline.com/mq102.html] is what I’m looking for. I generally prefer loose, long, baggy clothing anyway.

Anyway, what’s the dope on this? Would it be seen as an afront to anyone (Muslim or otherwise)? What are the cultural rules and fashions? I’m not looking to redo a wardrobe, just maybe a shirt or something. Will I look like a :wally ?

I frequently wear salwar kameez, very comfy and perfect in the summer, and at $39 a set [which I can get dual use of wearing under my medieval persian clothing for Society for Creative Anachronism…] it is hard to beat=)

I wouldn’t wear a sari, I have the feeling they would do a slither and I would be mostly nekkid somewhere public :eek: and I dont have any real desire to wear a kimono or cheongsam.

Hm, you male or female?

drool…

what i actually wear

Male. But I think that the possibilities of robes and the like are vastly underestimated by Western society. If someone could give me a few nice fashion tips, I’d be willing to help start the fight.

My only fear is wearing something that will offend someone (not someone American, they can piss off, someone foreign because I “don’t have a right” to wear it or whatever)

Of course, I’m not exactly looking for a turban dealer, either.

I, too, am a blond-haired, blue-eyed male.

MANY years ago, a friend sent me a souvenir from his honeymoon in Jamaica - a rasta tam with big dreadlocks woven into the bottom. It was hilarious.

I wore it to a neighborhood festival years later. One gentleman spotted me and was very (vocally) offended by the notion.

I pointed to his extremely distinctive yellow-with-black-zig-zag-stripe shirt and told him that Charlie Brown was a white man. He conceded the point, and we decided to quit arguing and drink beer. It was a breakthrough. Wear what you want.

It’s called a kurta (with the baggy pants, kurta pyjama). It’s not exclusively Muslim; people all over South Asia can be seen wearing them. You can get the [url=“http://www.shalincraft-india.com/kurta.html”]long version](http://www.shukronline.com/mq102.html) or the short version. I can’t imagine anyone being annoyed with you for wearing one.

Nah, that wouldn’t happen. We tend to use safety pins to keep things pinned together. The main material of the sari is tucked and pinned into an underskirt, and the bit you wrap around your body can be pinned to the underblouse. I’ve never ended up nekkid in public, even whilst doing some Indian style dancing whilst wearing a sari.

Hm, none of the websites I have seen showed using safety pins=\ though someone showed me sort of how to turn a sari into pants by tucking them up and around and through and slither oh bother…at least I was wearing a bathing suit=) though I do buy saris on ebay and use them to make persian and roman clothing [ok, and one chemise for an italian renn/venitian from about 1420]

Hey, safety pins is the only way I will wear a sari. It might not be traditional, but it prevents ‘wardrobe malfunctions’. :wink:

A friend of mine wanted to buy a sari to wear at my wedding. She asked me to come along and learn how to put it on her. It was much more complicated than I expected - those things are long! And she is very, very tiny.

But what I found hilarious was the bevy of Indian women who flocked around her. The older ones were holding up pieces, making folds and tucks and looking at me and trying to show the silly blond girl how all this worked. The oldest looking woman did the last tucks, waving angrily at the youngest girl who held out a few safety pins. She muttered something in her native tongue, which could obviously be translated something like, “Silly girl! Who needs those new-fangled things? Get them out of my sight, you disgust me!”

The youngest girl waited until the old lady’s back was turned before taking my hand quietly and palming me the safety pins. “Here and here.” she whispered, pointing to the critical spots on her own sari. :smiley:

As for the OP, go for it. Like you say, the whole atmosphere is opener than you’ve experienced - why waste this opportunity to try on something new? As long as you’re living with integrety and respect, people who have a problem with what you wear have just that - their own problem. You might get a few double-takes, but I doubt anyone will have a real issue with it. Besides, around here there are just as many blue eyed blond Sufis as dark haired, and many of the American converts wear traditional garb.

[QUOTE=aruvqan]
I wouldn’t wear a sari, I have the feeling they would do a slither and I would be mostly nekkid somewhere public[\QUOTE]

Saris are meant to be worn with a petticoat underneath. Even if the sari came off, it would be unlikely for you to be “mostly nekkid.”

[QUOTE=acsenray]

=) still doesnt trip my trigger, i am more a pants type lerson=)

But really, salwwar kameez are wonderfully comfy, and great in the summer=)

I love ethnic clothing, I even wear caftans around. I get funny looks, but I really don’t care one bit, I can show off my embroidery skills=) Pity I could never wear ethnic clothing to work=( last job sucked in that respect.

I would love a chance to travel to areas of the middle east, and it is nice to know that I wouldn’t be glaringly offensive in showing off body parts=) and they are comfy on airplanes as well=) Now if I could score a nice whole body veil instead of making one, I would be happy [anybody else love the one they used in Fifth Element? ]

As long as you wear an ethnic outfit tastefully, I don’t see why people should be offended, unless it’s religious wear, of course.

Filipinos (or at least my friends and Family) are quite impressed when they see non-Filipinos wearing the ethnic clothing. Of course, the lowland outfits have a European origin anyway, and could easily be justified for your typical white American :).

At least for men it’s pretty simple, and the only “native” item one has to buy is the shirt, which is called a Barong Tagalog. This is made from very fine fabric which is transparent, and is embroidered on the front with various designs. The cloth can be raw silk, organza, or pinya (pineapple) fibers, and even banana fibers. It is worn over either a white long sleeved undershirt (a long sleeved t-shirt works fine), or a black one (which I prefer as it sets off the embroidery). You wear slacks and dress shoes along with it. The outfit is considered as formal as a suit. Soooo… if you were to wear that outfit just around town you might get puzzled or amused looks.

Women have several choices, all Spanish in origin:

  • Maria Clara, which has four parts, a camisa (blouse), Saya (skirt), Pañuelo (scarf), and Tapis (overskirt). The Camisa and skirt are similar to an older costume which consisted of a blouse and a skirt (such as you see with certain South East Asian island peoples). But the entire dress is of an 1800’s style.

  • Terno, which is a more modern dress, which is form fitting, but has a neck line that is generally square cut, and “butterfly sleeves”, flattened with high shoulders that give the appearance of wings.

  • Balintawak - similar to the terno, but looser and was originally something worn for relaxation (from what i’ve read).

  • There is another skirt called a “malong” worn by the muslim Maranao in Mindanao. The malong is a tubular skirt, and is quite pretty.

As long as you wear an ethnic outfit tastefully, I don’t see why people should be offended, unless it’s religious wear, of course.

Filipinos (or at least my friends and Family) are quite impressed when they see non-Filipinos wearing the ethnic clothing. Of course, the lowland outfits have a European origin anyway, and could easily be justified for your typical white American :).

At least for men it’s pretty simple, and the only “native” item one has to buy is the shirt, which is called a Barong Tagalog. This is made from very fine fabric which is transparent, and is embroidered on the front with various designs. The cloth can be raw silk, organza, or pinya (pineapple) fibers, and even banana fibers. It is worn over either a white long sleeved undershirt (a long sleeved t-shirt works fine), or a black one (which I prefer as it sets off the embroidery). You wear slacks and dress shoes along with it. The outfit is considered as formal as a suit. Soooo… if you were to wear that outfit just around town you might get puzzled or amused looks.

Women have several choices, all Spanish in origin:

  • Maria Clara, which has four parts, a camisa (blouse), Saya (skirt), Pañuelo (scarf), and Tapis (overskirt). The Camisa and skirt are similar to an older costume which consisted of a blouse and a skirt (such as you see with certain South East Asian island peoples). But the entire dress is of an 1800’s style.

  • Terno, which is a more modern dress, which is form fitting, but has a neck line that is generally square cut, and “butterfly sleeves”, flattened with high shoulders that give the appearance of wings.

  • Balintawak - similar to the terno, but looser and was originally something worn for relaxation (from what i’ve read).

Not Spanish in Orgin:

  • There is another skirt called a “malong” worn by the muslim Maranao in Mindanao. The malong is a tubular skirt, and is quite pretty.

For ethnic clothing, I recently bought mine from Bokitta, https://www.bokitta.com/clothing.html. Although they are known for their pinless hijabs they also sell conservative clothing that would match your taste. Let me know how it goes for you.