Zhou Dynasty Clothes

The focus of traditional Chinese clothing was on the fabric’s finish rather than on the body’s shape. Both sexes wore loose-fitting, uncomplicated clothing that was elaborately decorated with embroidery, weaving, and appliqué.

Fashion in Western Zhou was a symbol of social status. All emperors wore yellow clothes. The length of skirts, the breadth of sleeves, and the number of embellishments all communicated social standing. The Yi’s sash was adorned with jade, and the Hanfu became more baggy and sleeveless.

Around this time, the “Deep Robe,” also called the “Shenyi,” which is a mix of a tunic and a skirt, was first worn. People may have picked up on this trend quickly because of a new philosophical confidence in the possibility of moving up in society.

Zhou Dynasty Clothes

In this article, we will be discussing the zhou dynasty and the clothes of this era.

How Clothes Have Changed Since The Zhou Dynasty

Depending on their titles, emperors, princes, and officials wore one of six types of mianfu. The mianfu was the most elegant type of formal dress. It was worn to worship and honor the dead. It was built in a complicated way, and many of the things on it had symbolic meanings.

Emperors also wore bianfu, which was a little less formal than mianfu, when they had to do official business or talk to government officials. The emperor wore the xuanduan when they were not in court. Princes wore xuanduan to ceremonies with sacrifices, and students wore it to their parents’ homes first thing in the morning to show respect. Each of the mianfu, bianfu, and xuanduan had four parts: a skirt to wear underneath, a robe to wear in the middle, a bixi to wear on top, and a long cloth belt called a dadai (in Chinese).

In the early Eastern Zhou dynasty, there were strict rules about what people could wear, just like there were strict rules about what people could wear in the Western Zhou dynasty. People used these rules to keep society running smoothly and to tell people from different classes apart.

Aside from these changes based on social class, the daily hanfu became a little bit looser during this time, but it still kept the basic shape that was set during the Shang dynasty in the wearing of Yichang.

Once upon a time, sleeves could be either broad or thin. The Yi was tied on with a sash that was wrapped around the wearer’s waist and tied in a bow. Sometimes jade ornaments were hung from the strap. The skirts and Ku could be as short as just above the knee or as long as the ground. During the Zhou dynasty, most people wore clothes made from hemp, especially the minority groups who lived in the Southwest of China.

The Zhou dynasty made it even more official for women to wear ji by making a coming-of-age ceremony called Ji Li. This ceremony happened after a girl was engaged, and the fact that she wore Ji showed that she was already set to get married. Men could wear the Ji on their own, but it was much more common for them to wear the Ji with the guan to hold the headpiece in place.

Clothes of The Zhou Dynasty

During the Zhou Dynasty (1046–221 B.C.), however, when a strict social order was put in place, people started to be pickier. How we dress has become a way to show our political views. People can tell where you stand in society by the color, length, width, and decorations of what you wear.

Let’s say your mom just finished making you a great new yellow skirt, but you couldn’t wear it because only the Emperor was allowed to wear yellow. And if you thought, “Who cares? I’m going to wear it anyway,” you could end up in the hospital or worse.

Because there were so many differences between the nobility and the ordinary people, clothing was used as a status symbol to show how much better off the elite was. This had a big effect on how people dressed and how they decorated their homes.

During the Western Zhou period (1045–771 BC), the Kings of the Western Zhou Dynasty set up a strict hierarchy based on blood lineage and moral rules that were centered on families. The Western Zhou code of ethics was built on this system.

In the Eastern Zhou, the shenyi, or one-piece garment, and the mianfu, or sacred court robe, which was worn by ancient emperors and officials, were created (770 – 221 BC).

The sleeve openings of the hanfu were tightened with jade ornaments or a sash, and the sleeves were made longer. In the end, the collar had a cross-over style. The clothes of other ethnic groups, like hufu, which are the clothes of northern ethnic groups like the Huns, were made and eventually merged with Hanfu.

During the Zhou Dynasty, besides the Emperor taking all of your favorite colors for himself, other important things happened. One of these things was the first appearance of the dress jacket, which stayed popular through the next dynasties.

A long silk belt with a ring or piece of jade at the end was worn around the waist, and a cotton shawl was worn over the arms. The dress jacket had a short shirt jacket or waist jacket on top that was tucked into a floor-length skirt on the bottom.

Final Words

In this article, we gave a proper description of the zhou dynasty. Now you know the ancient clothes they used to cover their body and how dresses and colors indicated their social status. In this modern world of equality, you can hate their social systems. But it was meaningful and very much efficient.

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