Hanfu (Han Clothing) is the traditional dress of the Han Chinese. The Han in Hanfu refers to the Han people, not the Han Dynasty. Hanfu is the traditional dress of the Han people, also known as Hansuit, Huawei, and Han Clothes and Crown, and is the national dress of the Han people worn from the time of the Yellow Emperor to the end of the early Ming Dynasty. In the late Ming and early Qing dynasties, after the shaving of hair and the change of clothes, the Han costume came to an end.
The History of the Hanfu
Around 5,000 years ago, primitive agriculture and textile industries emerged in the land during the Neolithic period. The ancients tried to make clothes out of woven linen and began to wear clothes instead of animal skins. They then invented the mulberry silkworm and silk, contributing to the gradual formation of traditional Chinese dress.
The Shang Dynasty around 1600 BC – the prototype of Hanfu
The Shang Dynasty was the first written Chinese dynasty. However, according to numerous archaeological findings, the basic style of Hanfu already appeared during this period. Therefore, this is also the earliest confirmed date for the existence of the Hanfu.
1046 B.C. Zhou dynasty – the official establishment of the Hanfu
During this period, the clothing system was initially established. After that, Hanfu began to develop into a variety of styles. Significant differences can be seen, for example, between formal and informal Hanfu. The political, economic, ideological, and cultural changes that were taking place during this period were enormous. At the same time, the way of dressing was incorporated into the etiquette standards and became a reflection of manners. Since that time, traditional Chinese dress has become more detailed.
The Han Dynasty 202 BC – Hanfu establishes a system
The Han Dynasty was one of the most important dynasties in ancient history. The Chinese were given a new ethnic name and called themselves “Han.” During this period, the status of the Han costume as traditional Chinese dress was formalized. In addition, more attention was paid to the costume design, and hundreds of styles were created to suit different occasions. The style of Hanfu was gradually enhanced during this period. To standardize Hanfu, a system of Hanfu was established based on the experience and the identity of the people wearing it. Hanfu became a complete clothing system.
Tang Dynasty 618 AD – the peak of Hanfu
When the Silk Road collided with ideas between Eastern and Western civilizations, the Tang Dynasty was the most open dynasty in ancient China. The frequency of trade and cultural exchange between China and other countries reached unprecedented heights. Poetry and painting were prevalent during this era. Based on this, Hanfu s were designed at the time using various methods of embroidery and color matching. Through the Silk Road, Hanfu came to other countries and was well-loved and spread overseas.
1616 Qing Dynasty – The Sudden Disappearance of the Hanfu
The Qing Dynasty was the regime of the Manchus, another ethnic group in China. At this time, the government promoted Manchu dress and completely banned and abolished the Hanfu.
As a result, this traditional garment suddenly disappeared from China.
The structural composition of the Hanfu
The overall structure of the Hanfu consists of the headdress, the bodysuit, the foot suit, and the accessories. The wreath is one of the most critical parts of the traditional Han costume, and the supplements used on the hands are considered cultural symbols of ritual, including the crown and hat, scarf and frame, and headdress. It can be divided into a deep clothing system, a garment system, and a dress system. The bodice system is the oldest and most basic form of Hanfu, consisting of two parts: the upper garment and the lower garment. The short jacket is also a short garment usually worn with a skirt underneath. Finally, there is also the skirt, a lower garment attached to the waist.
There are three essential features of Hanfu.
1. The crossed collar
2. Waist tied with a rope
3. Loose, long-sleeved clothing
The crossover collar refers to the intersection of the left and proper turn-down collars of the Hanfu. With the help of the ties on the front of the left and suitable garments, one can easily tie the garment up. The appropriate motif represents a particular pattern, and the left lapel overlays the front of the right lapel.
This clothing style exists in many countries/regions of East Asia, but while other races have left and right patterns, the Hanfu only officially accepts the correct pattern.
Hanfu refers to ties with strings and concealed buttons. Unlike modern clothing, the Hanfu has almost no control. It is thought that connections were used because buttons had not yet been invented, but they are not valid. However, Hanfu s have ‘buttons,’ or what we call ‘hidden buckles.’ The hidden buckle, which is not visible on the surface, is a cloth knotted button, which can usually be found in the collar of a man’s shirt.
Modern Hanfu can be divided into traditional Hanfu and modern Hanfu.
The former refers to Hanfu s with strict shapes, delicate patterns, and antique materials. The designs are on the retro side, such as the four clouds and flying fish patterns, and some traditional techniques are used in their production, such as grass and wood dyeing, gold weaving, and tapestry.
The latter is not bound to the ancient system in terms of patterns and materials but is more integrated into today’s Han aesthetic, using modern techniques such as blending but still not detached from the rigorous shape. Refined version.
What is the craft of Hanfu?
A complete set usually has three layers: the small clothes (underwear), the medium garments, and the coat. The tiny clothes include the sweatshirt (jumper) and the calf’s nose. The mid-coat comprises the top and bottom trousers, the mid-sheet, and the quilted collar. Finally, overcoats are outer garments such as deep coats, round-necked gowns, dresses, ruffles, skirts, etc. In addition, there are accessories such as socks, shoes, belts, jade belts, and shoes.
In the early Ming Dynasty, Han Chinese clothes were tied with ties and buttons. At the end of the Ming Dynasty, buttons were used more often in conspicuous places, but they were distinctly different from those of the Manchu and Qing Dynasties.