When traveling through Vietnam, you will see women wearing ao dai everywhere. In Vietnamese, ‘áo dài’ means ‘long shirt’. It is the national costume of Vietphái nam, symbolizing beauty and elegance.
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Though the modern ao dai has many versions, such as those with shorter panels & different collar shapes (round, V or open), the typical female ao dẻo is a tight-fitting long silk dress with long sleeves that is worn over long pants. It gives the wearer a simple yet flattering protệp tin while still showing the curves of the body.
Ao Dai Dress Innovation: 4 Differences Between Modern Ao Dai & Ancient Ones
The modern version of ao dẻo has changed a lot since its creation. Want lớn know the main differences between the ancient ao dẻo & the ao dẻo worn in modern times? Cheông chồng out the four main differences below.
1. The ancient ao dẻo is loose & boxy in shape. It’s good for work và is comfortable lớn wear. On the other hand, the modern ao dai expresses beauty with tight-fitting fabric that is still comfortable because of the two slits on the side that span the bottom portion of the dress.
If you would like to take beautiful photos in an ao dẻo, it’s a good idea khổng lồ have sầu the dress tailor-made based on your form size. This will fit you well và look much better than the rented or store-bought ones.
2. The ancient ao dai is simple in color because of societal restrictions during feudalism. The modern ao dai has different colors representing age và status.
Young girls often wear plain trắng, symbolizing purity. In Vietnam, high school girls’ unisize is commonly a white ao dai. Older but unmarried girls wear soft pastel colors, while older married women usually wear ao dai in richer & darker colors.
3. The modern ao dai is cooler and more breathable than the ancient ao dai. Modern versions usually use silk, lace or other arable fabrics for comfort in the hot weather of Southeast Asia. The ancient ao dai was made with multiple layers of cloth.
4. The ancient ao dai was mainly for members of the royal family or government officials. Nowadays, ao dẻo is worn daily by Vietnamese people of all economic backgrounds. It is also the uniform of many businesses.
Ao Dai for Men: Worn for Vietnamese Weddings & National Festivals
Though ao dẻo was popular with both men và women in ancient times, you will see few men wearing ao dai nowadays. Ao dai is usually worn only by women. Here’s why:
1. It is considered khổng lồ be old fashioned if men wear ao dai. The various modern versions of ao dẻo seek lớn show the femininity of women & are therefore more popular in women’s fashion.
2. Men think ao dẻo are not comfortable for work because of the modern tight styles, although the men’s version is much looser than the women’s.
During some important occasions such as weddings, funerals, và Tet, many men will wear ao dai to show respect to lớn tradition. In order lớn expvà this exotic clothing culture, some groups và organizations have sầu started to lớn hold activities showing men dressed in ao dẻo. Some Vietnamese government officials also wear ao dẻo when attending international gatherings.
The History of Ao Dai Dress
Even though the ao dai is perceived as the symbol for traditional Vietnamese identity and femininity, its current form has only emerged after substantial foreign influence, making it the ao dai we know today.
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The word ‘ao dai’ was originally used in the 18th century, during the Nguyen dynasty when Chinese-style clothing was mandated.
Ao dai was the name for a specific outfit that was used at the court of the Nguyen Lords in Hue, lớn distinguish them from other courtiers.
The outfit evolved into lớn the áongũthân, a five-paneled aristocratic gown worn in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Throughout the 20th century, ao dẻo underwent a lot of changes.
In the 1920s and 1930s during French colonialism, the outfit was redesigned as a modern dress by a French-trained Vietnamese artist named Cat Tuong, or Le Mur. He combined the western dress style with the traditional ao dai. During this time, ao dẻo began khổng lồ be promoted as the national costume for the modern era.
In the 1950s, Saigon designers tightened the fit to make it more appealing. Madame Nhu, sister-in-law of President Ngo Dinh Diem, popularized the new tight-fitting version of the ao dẻo with the boat-neông xã, considered controversial at the time due to its sensuality.
Ao Dai Dress in Modern Time
Ao dai comes in many variations of color, pattern, length, và collar in modern times.
Besides being the daily clothes for women, it is worn for special occasions such as weddings, Tết celebrations, & other formal occasions. Specific colors of ao dai are worn for worship và ritual ceremonies. Blue, purple, & brown are the main choices.
Ao Dai for Wedding
Ao dẻo is also commonly worn as uniforms for women whether for civil servants, tour guides, khách sạn staff, or high school girls.
Ao Dai’s Social Influence
1. Inspiring architectural design: The exterior of the 65-floor Lotte Centre in Hanoi is inspired by ao dẻo.
2. A symbol of home: The Vietnamese in California will hold the Ao Dai Festival every year. It is a symbol of national pride. During the festival, many will dress in ao dẻo khổng lồ show their respect & longing for Vietphái mạnh.
The Difference Between Vietnamese Ao Dai và Chinese Cheongsam
Modern ao dẻo looks similar lớn Chinese Cheongsam or Qipao in shape. Both are the national costume & mainly popular with women. Want lớn know how lớn distinguish the two?
Vietnamese Ao Dai
1. An ao dai is split from the waist inkhổng lồ two flowing pieces split & needs khổng lồ be worn with pants underneath. A qipao also has a split in the skirt but normally located in a lower position. Pants are not worn underneath a qipao.
2. An ao dẻo is tight on the upper part of the toàn thân but loose from the waist. A qipao is tight all over to lớn show the curve sầu of the hips and legs.
3. An ao dẻo is more suitable for walking because of the inclusion of pants underneath the dress và is commonly worn as daily clothes. Qipaos are mainly worn for parties or other formal occasions because they are not practical for daily work.
4. Ao dẻo are usually made with long sleeves và fall down to the ankles. Most qipao are made with short sleeves and have varying lengths.
5. No buttons are included in the kiến thiết of an ao dai. On a qipao, you will always see a knot button near the neck.
Buttons in Chinese Qipao
Buttons in Chinese Qipao
The tight-fitting feature of ao dẻo means that you need to get one tailor-made for you. The good news is there are many tailors who can do this whether in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minc City, or Hoi An City.
The creation of an ao dẻo usually takes 1-2 days. The cost differs according to lớn the unique of the fabric and is around USD40 or more for a comfortable outfit.
As part of our tour in Vietphái mạnh, we will visit Hoi An, where you can put on a traditional ao dai and be taken around this historic charming town with a professional photographer. Your personal guide will be happy lớn recommkết thúc the reputable shops & tailors where you can have your ao dẻo made.
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