Tashi delek - བཀྲ་ཤིས་བདེ་ལེགས
Diverse natural conditions on the vast Tibetan Plateau have produced a clothing culture that goes back over millennia. There are three main types of garment – that worn by herdsmen, farmers and aristocrats -- which define occupation and social status.
As Tibetan herdsmen live mainly in the high-altitude northern grasslands under a harsh climate of freezing temperatures and sandstorms their clothes mainly function to keep out the cold and wind. Herdsmen wear large, heavy robes made from sheep hide, sometimes with a velveteen trim on the sleeves, draped over the right shoulder leaving the arm exposed. These robes, which also serve as blankets, were formerly worn with a broadsword, short sword and firelock, weapons that are nowadays purely decorative symbols of wealth. Women on the grasslands also wear hide robes, trimmed with black velveteen at the neckline, cuffs and hem and decorated with red, blue and green velveteen stripes.
The Tibetan robe is loose-fitting, with long sleeves and a wider-than-usual waist, and its front is opened from the right side. The Tibetan robe is made from leather among herdsmen, and woollen fabrics among farmers.Virtually every Tibetan man wears such a robe, which is also pocket-less. Instead of buttons, it is held together with a waist band, with the front puffing up so as to hold wooden bowls, roast barley flour bag, butter container and even an infant in the bosom.
When a Tibetan man puts on his robe, he tends to wear only one sleeve and pull the other sleeve around his back to the front of it-a habit that has much to do with the weather. On the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau there is a glaring difference in temperature between day and night, and the weather changes unpredictably. "A mountain experiences four seasons in a single day, and the weather changs every ten miles," as the local saying goes.
In summer it could be chilly in the morning and hot at noon. That is why a local herdsman has to keep warm with the Tibetan robe when he goes outdoors in the morning, but by noontime it becomes so hot that he has to wear only one sleeve or leave both sleeves alone by typing them around his waist. When dusk sets in he has to put on both sleeves because it's become cold once again. The loose-fitting robe also makes an excellent quilt when the wearer stops for the night.
Obviously the Tibetan robe with its multiple functions is indispensable for the Tibetans.
Minorities in Tibet all have their own traditional social customs, way of life and social activities. The men usually wear leather hats, boots, colorful ribbons at the waist and Tibetan knives to display their power and heroic spirits. The women dress in a graceful manner, and are covered with vibrant amber, coral and other precious jewelry, plus luxurious and beautiful gold and silver ornaments.
In the old villages, many families have preserved for hundreds of years, the traditional costumes from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) inherited from their ancestors. These valuable traditional costumes are made of silk, embroidered with linen, gold and silver, and decorated with jewelry. Villagers dress in traditional costumes to celebrate festivals and ceremonies.
China and Tibet - Xi Zang 西藏
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that," Dalai Lama