The History of Salwar Kameez

The beginning of the Salwar Kameez can not be taken as a token for only one nation. With the initiation of the Islamic region in the Middle East as well as in the Arab Peninsula. The fashion of clothing was clearly defined for both males and females. 

Islamic outfits have been present for centuries that denote as the symbol of purity and mark the status that distinguishes between a believer and a non-believer. The term salwar means loose-fitted trousers which have fastened by the drawstring around the waist. The term kameez is often spelled as gameez or gamis. It is a shirt of varying lengths. Hence it must be conveniently interpreted that the origin of the salwar kameez has either Persian or Arabic. The basic outfit of both females and males is based on the simple tunic which is common in the region since Roman times. The Turkic dress was hugely influential throughout the Islamic region. 


The Seljuk Turks began to be in fashion from central Asia making an impact within the dynasties in Iran and Asia Minor by the eleventh century. By the mid-16th century, the Ottoman Turkish empire targeted most of the land that covered the Eastern Mediterranean. The traditional Turki clothing which derives to be either for males or females comprises loose-fitting trousers and a shirt which has often topped with various types of jackets, vests, or long coats. 

The layering of clothing was a significant aspect. The ruling of the Ottoman for over 500 years on the Arab world resulted in the mixing of different outfits. The adoption of various buttoned vests or jackets made of silk fabric or decorated with embroidery on wool fabric has evidence of conjuring fashion into Arab dresses. 

The traditional outfit of Iran along with Afghanistan has indicative of nomadic origin with various layers of coats and salwars with typical features of dresses. The Turkic people introduced these forms among the Northern Muslims from Central Asia in the eleventh and the twelfth century. Such different forms have reflected in the outfit of Mughal courtrooms. Wherein men wore trousers that typically combined with front-opening coats. Whereas for females, the futuristic clothing might involve a bodice or tunic along with a veil. 

Traditional Arabic Costumes 

The Middle East comprises around seventeen nations and Iran is among them. Even though Iran can not consider the Arabic nation. However, the history of the country has a direct link with the Arab world as the rulers of Arabic nations ruled Persia and initiated the religion, Islam. 

Hence, the clothing of Persia has mostly influenced by the Arab to a greater limit which automatically affected the origin of the Salwar Kameez. At the initial look, the Arabic clothing and the salwar kameez worn in India looked similar in style and design. 

“If you have any desire to figure out Omani customary dress; go to India”. About when she came to Oman after marriage to her mother. There are numerous local distinctions in the customary outfit of the Center East (Bedouin Promontory). The primary pieces of clothing are the ‘Dishdasha/Thobe/Kaftan’. They are an upper piece of clothing produced using vigorously weaved texture in brilliant varieties for the most part lower leg length. Under this ‘Dishdasha/Thobe/Kaftan’ is a lower piece of clothing known as ‘Sirwaal/Sarwal’. These are drawstring pants commonly tighter at the lower leg. 

The ‘Lihaf/Shal’ is a head covering worn over the head. The ‘Shal’ is generally dark in variety. One more significant part of the ladies’ pieces of clothing is the shroud or ‘Burkha’ – the mask. In certain pieces of Arabia and Center East, the ladies cover their appearances in broad daylight.


You might get this clothing easily from the marketplace or boutiques. However, if you want to get a fabric for your salwar kameez you have to either approach fabric manufacturers or fabric distributors. You can also contact companies who deal with these manufacturers like Fabriclore. Here the company source fabrics from various manufacturers and provide certified fabrics to boutique owners and designers. 

You can get various fabrics for sewing your salwar kameez such as silk, georgette, cotton, chiffon, and so on. Along with these, you can also get various prints like check and floral prints

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