A generation ago, the turban was the "crowning glory" of all Punjabis whether Muslim, Hindu or Sikh. Muslims and Hindus have given up their turbans, but it remains, literally, an article of faith for Sikh men whose religion forbids them to cut their hair. The kurta, a extended straight-cut, loose shirt teamed with pyjamas, the loose baggy salwar, or a kind of sarong called a loongi or tehmat makes up the traditional dress for men. Winter sees the rustic Punjabi in colourful sweaters that wives and mothers are so skilled in making.
Traditional Dresses Of Punjabi Women
Churidar Kurta invariably worn by Punjabi women in actuality has paved the way for national globalization of this dress. This was traditionally the dress worn in Punjab, but is now worn almost everywhere, particularly among the younger generations with bright coloured dupattas. A Salwar Kameez has two pieces of clothes- the Kameez, or shirt that is the top piece; and the Salwar, (pants) or bottom piece. A Dupatta is a piece of colourful cloth that adorns the female neck like a scarf. Salwar Kameez`s and Dupattas come in a variety of colours and designs. The women can also be seen wearing shawls adorned with the beautiful Phulkari embroidery. The shawl is completely covered in thick silk embroidery and folk motifs done in jewel-tones on an ochre background.
Traditional Dresses of Punjabi Men
The traditional costume of the men of Punjab comprises Kurta Pyjama. The Kurta is a kind of loose shirt which is long and straight-cut. The Pyjamas are loose, baggy pants which are tied at the waist. Some men also wear the Kurta with the Lungi or Tehmat, which is a kind of sarong. During winters they can be seen wearing bright colourful sweaters. Some of the boys as well as the grown up men can be seen wearing loose pants or slacks with a collared shirt or t-shirt. The Sikhs among the Punjabis can be distinctly identified by their attire as they are obliged by religion to wear turbans, known as Pugg or Pagri.
Accessories for Punjabi Women
Punjabi women, as well as men, are often bedecked in gold. They adorn themselves with necklaces, bangles, rings, nose rings, ear rings, toe-rings, anklets and other ornaments to pin up the hair with. Sikh women and men are seen wearing the Kada, a steel bangle, at all times. After adolescence, and almost certainly after marriage, women are expected to wear traditional Indian clothing. However with modernism creeping in, this trend is rapidly changing and women rejoicing in wearing a variety of western wear. Jeans, Jackets, Trousers, Skirts and other form of western outfits has outshone the traditional attire by the women of modern Punjab.
Traditional Punjabi shoes, called Juttis, are extremely popular with men in both the rural and urban areas. They are very comfortable and also look very elegant. During the winter months, both the Punjabi men and women adorn a woollen shawl or a small blanket, over their chest and necks. The shawls, usually crafted by female members of the family, are exquisitely colourful and intricately designed.
The modern urban Punjabi men have also adopted the western dressing style and are equally at ease in a pair of jeans and t-shirt as they are in the Lungi and Kurta. For the purpose of formal wear, Punjabi men can also be seen wearing shirts and trousers.
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