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Secret History of Mongolian Clothes

Mongolian clothing has traditionally been made to be strong, warm, durable and comfortable and flexible when riding on a horse or sitting on the floor of a yurt. Both men and women wear “deels” (ankle-length padded silk robes lined with sheepskin for the winter and tied around the waist with a sashlike belt) in the winter and a “terlig” (thinly-lined coat similar to a del) in the summer.

To common eyes, Mongolian dress seems very simple, no more than a robe and a pair of boots. In fact, Mongolian clothing and personal adornments are rather complicated and colorful. They vary in forms and materials according to different regions, ages, status of marriage, and distinguish between splendid attire and common costume. In general, Mongolian dresses and personal adornments mainly include: ornaments, robes, belts and boots.

Mongolians have traditionally worn wool in the winter and cotton in the summer. Wool is also used to make saddle bags, bridles and ropes. Leather and fur are used to make various parts of clothing. These days most Mongolians wear Western clothes. In the winter, they wear Russian-style fur hat and padded jacket.

Deels are designed for horseback riding, keeping riders warm while not constraining them. They have high collars that can be buttoned or unbuttoned. The left side buttons close over the right side. The edges of the coat and sleeves are sometimes trimmed with velvet of another beautiful fabric. Sometimes a long sash or leather belt adorned with silver or copper ornaments is tied around the waist. Under theirs deels, Mongolians generally wear baggy trousers and a shirt

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