Sri Lanka, a country of beaches and forests, is well known for its diverse and unique traditions and cultures. Various national groups of people reside in Sri Lanka and hence the attires also vary accordingly. There are dresses for regular use and dresses designed to wear on festivals and special occasions.
The country has been influenced by the traditions of Buddhism carried through generations by the ancestors. The traditional clothing vary according to age, social status, specific events, and even marital status. It is said that the textile industries of Sri Lanka have been heavily influenced by the Portuguese culture brought along by the Dutch invaders.
Traditional Attire of Women
Lama Sariya is a half saree with two parts. The uppermost part is a tight fit jacket with beautifully embroidered frills that spreads artistically around the neck. The lowermost part is an ankle-length drape that is wrapped around the waist resembling a well-fitted skirt with wide frills.
The colors and designs of Lama Sariya vary with age, marital status, and religious events. The color is white for religious ceremonies and multi vibrant colors during weddings. It is a treat to the eyes to observe the flower girls clad in spectacular designed costumes during the marriage functions.
Redde and Hatte
Redde and Hatte are primarily the attire of the rural areas of Sri Lanka. Redde covers the lower part of the body. It is an ankle-length long piece of cloth that is wrapped around the waist. Hatte is for the upper part of the body, consisting of a short linen blouse with simple designs. The women use precious gems and jewellery along with the dress during weddings and other religious events.
Traditional Attire of Men
Jathika Anduma is the traditional attire of the Sri Lankan men. It consists of two parts. The upper part is a shirt available in a wide variety of colors. During religious ceremonies, the colors are generally light or white. While during weddings or other family ceremonies, the colors vary from pale gold to cream. The shirts are never tucked in.
The lower part is a long piece of clothing, mostly artistically printed, wrapped around the waist. It is known as a sarong in the colloquial language. Sometimes the men wear trousers beneath the sarong. There are multiple ways to wear a sarong, either like a skirt or tie and tuck in between the legs like a dhoti.
The dresses of Sri Lanka are quite simple and elegant, supported by gleaming colors. The women deck up themselves with varied glittering ornaments. It is pleasing to watch the traditional costumes of Sri Lanka and the unity within the inhabitants when it comes to culture and heritage.
The featured image courtesy : nationalclothing.org