The History of Ao Dai Vietnam

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Ao Dai has been a traditional costume of Vietnam and a charming symbol of Vietnamese women. In the modern era, you can easily notice  Ao Dai at almost every places in Vietnam: the uniform of high school girls, the uniform of women teachers, the formal costume of office girls, receptionists, air stewardesses, etc.

Ao Dai seems to be a longstanding culture of Vietnam and really rich in its development history. Fayfay.com will bring you back to the date Ao Dai was gradually created and then becomes the national symbol of Vietnam.

1. The origin of Ao Dai

The most ancient type of Ao Dai recorded was called Giao Lãnh (about the 17th century). This is the original version of ‘áo tứ thân’. But the front long flaps are not tied together but dropped freely or left intersected. The clothes are further dressed with a type of camisole, a long black dress and a colored fabric belt used to tie up around the waist.

However, later due to the work of farming or trading, Giao Lanh ‘ao dai’ was reduced into ‘áo tứ thân’ (which means a 4-long-flap dress). This dress includes: the right half of front flap, the left half of the front flap, the right half of behind flap, the left half of the behind flap). ‘Ao tu than’ was dressed out of the original black dress so that the whole set is convenient to carry items on their shoulders. 

2. The history of Ao Dai in Hue

According to Phan Thuan An, a researcher of Hue’s culture, variations of the Ao dai from Hue have been closely linked to historical ups and downs. Under the Minh Mang Dynasty (1820-1841), to solve the differences of clothes worn by people from different regions after the conflict of the Trinhs and the Nguyens (1623-1777), King Minh Mang issued a royal ordinance about the uniform nationwide, under which royal concubines and maids had to wear the Ao dai when they left the royal palace. Ordinary people had to wear trousers and they were prohibited to wear skirts. To adults, Ao dai was a “must” outfit.

Over the past years, although materials and designs of the Ao dai have been changed, women from Hue are loyal to their traditional Ao Dai. Their thinking of the garment colors and usage remains unchanged. Besides students who wear the Ao dai at school, Hue women wear the Ao dai when they go to the pagoda or during festive days which make them look both elegant and ceremonial. Female employees working in the state office also like to wear the Ao dai at their offices

3. Why it has to be "Purple"?

Hue women choose the colour for their Ao dai to be in line with the colour of the sky and surrounding environment and the unique solemn look of the imperial city of Hue. A local saying goes, “look at the colour of the sky in order to choose the colour of the dress”. The dress worn at festive days often have bright colours; at worship and ritual ceremonies they are brown, purple, blue and milky, and with hidden designs. On rainy days the dress is often dark, and on sunny days it is light and bright. Hue women like to wear the purple Ao Dai, which is not too light or too dark.

Today, modern Vietnamese women usually wear the ao dai for special occasions such as Tet (Vietnamese New Year), weddings, festivals, and ceremonies. In public high schools, schoolgirls have to wear the white ao dai twice a week, on Monday and on an optional weekday. High school female teachers also have to wear the ao dai when they are in class, but they can choose the color and style.

4. Fabulous Ao Dai Show

Fueled by the desire to communicate the love and passion for the Ao dai and traditional culture, designers use the Ao Dai as a vehicle to showcase the unique beauty of Vietnam, from natural landscape to cultural images, thereby highlighting the charms of Vietnam, the charms of Hue.

In particular, the program also has the exchange, interaction and cultural sharing between visitors to watch with the performing artist. You also wear the King, Queen, Princess, Prince Ao Dai for photo shooting. This is also a very attractive point that we would like to bring pleasure to tourists.

There is also a big series of event in Hue Festival 2019. Check it out HERE.

Ao dai is the tradional costume of Vietnam. Once you travel to Vietnam, you should observe the beauty of this dress also try it out if you have a chance.We hope our reviews of Ao Dai Vietnam has brought you a lot of good information about the beautiful country Vietnam.

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