Clothing of Luoba Ethnic Group

As a nationality living for many generations in the highlands and canyons, Lhoba people show their boldness in their clothing. One characteristic of their clothing is that the fiber of wild plants and animal skins are widely used. In the past, a skirt made of straws in the Jizhua canyon was very popular among them. Now, although women have homespun skirts and dresses, they still like to wear a straw skirt outside to protect the cloth skirt inside.

Lhoba women are usually dressed in garment-matched, non-collar, and narrow-sleeved coats, which are made from flax, with a small piece of calf outside. In addition, they like wearing tight barrel-shaped skirts around the hips and wrap their legs into leggings, bundled tight by strips. Women pay a lot of attention to their ornaments. They wear jewelry, including silver and copper bracelets, rings, and tens of blue-and-white-pearl necklaces, which may weigh up to several kilograms, and can fill up a small bamboo back-basket. These “accouterments” derive from the many years’ exchanges amongst the families. They represent the belongings of a family. Whenever there is a celebration, all women dress up and compete with each other.

Men’s clothing indicates their hunting life in the forest. Most of them wear woolen sleeveless, belly-length black jackets, and a piece of wild bull skin on the back tied with a leather strip. Inside, their have Tibetan Pulu (Tibetan woven clothes or blankets) robe. Men in the Bogar tribe, more peculiarly, wear helmet-like hats made from bearskin. The hat is laced with a ring of bearskin, whose hair spreads out. There is usually a square piece of bearskin on the back of the hat. The hat is hard and can be used for concealment in hunting. When outside, they carry bows and arrows and wear swords at their side. With shining ornaments, their tall statures look more handsome and dignified.

Lhoba people all like rarefied waistbands, which can be made of bines, leather, or wool, and are twined into various colorful patterns. The waistbands can be used not only to bundle the clothes, but also to hang knives, fire-maker, and accouterments made of bronze or shellfish.