The Royal Robes: Examining the Fashion of Middle Eastern Royalty

(Audio blog reading by The Sultan)

Welcome to the royal world of Middle Eastern royalty and their fashion! From the intricate robes of Persian Shahs to the glittering jewels of Ottoman Sultans, the traditional garb of the region’s monarchs is steeped in history and cultural significance. But what exactly does it all mean? In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the fashion of Middle Eastern royalty and explore the symbolism behind the robes, jewels, and accessories.

First off, it’s important to note that the traditional clothing of Middle Eastern royalty is heavily influenced by the region’s hot climate. Light, breathable fabrics such as cotton and linen are favored over heavy wool or velvet, and loose-fitting garments allow for maximum airflow. The use of bright colors and intricate embroidery also serves a practical purpose, as they help to reflect the intense desert sun.

One of the most iconic garments of Middle Eastern royalty is the thobe, a long, flowing robe that is worn by both men and women. The thobe is typically made of white cotton or linen, and is embroidered with intricate patterns and designs. The white color of the thobe symbolizes purity and honor, and the embroidery often features religious or cultural motifs. For men, the thobe is often worn with a headscarf known as a keffiyeh, which is typically made of cotton and is folded and wrapped around the head to provide shade from the sun.

Another important garment of Middle Eastern royalty is the abaya, a long, flowing cloak that is worn by women. The abaya is typically made of black or dark-colored fabric and is embroidered with gold or silver thread. The black color of the abaya symbolizes humility and devotion, and the embroidery serves to add a touch of elegance and luxury. The abaya is often worn over a traditional dress known as the thawb, which is a long, loose-fitting tunic that is worn with a headscarf.

In addition to the thobe and abaya, Middle Eastern royalty is also known for their ornate headdresses and jewelry. One of the most iconic headdresses is the tarboosh, a red fez-like hat that is worn by men. The tarboosh is often adorned with gold or silver thread and is typically worn with a tassel hanging from the top. The color red symbolizes power and strength, and the tassel is said to represent the wearer’s connection to their heritage and culture.

For women, traditional jewelry such as the haqiq and jalabiya are popular choices. The haqiq is a necklace that is made of gold or silver and is adorned with precious gems such as diamonds and emeralds. The jalabiya is a pair of earrings that are made of gold or silver and are shaped like a crescent moon. The haqiq and jalabiya are both part of the traditional attire worn by men in the Gulf region, particularly in Saudi Arabia.

But the fashion of Middle Eastern royalty doesn’t stop there. In recent years, there has been a growing trend of Middle Eastern royalty embracing contemporary fashion designers and trends. Middle Eastern royals are not shy about mixing traditional garb with high-end, luxury fashion.

In conclusion, the traditional garb of Middle Eastern royalty is a reflection of the region’s culture, history and the climate. The robes, jewels and accessories are not only a symbol of power and prestige, but also a representation of heritage, religion and culture. With the changing times, it will be interesting to see how the fashion of Middle Eastern royalty adapts and evolves in the future. Will they continue to hold on to traditional attire or will they embrace contemporary fashion? One thing is for sure, the fashion of Middle Eastern royalty will always be a reflection of the rich history and cultural significance of the region.