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Home > Costume Categories > Indian Women Costumes > Kaftans

Kaftan Kaftan is a long, loose, opened fronted, wide sleeved, collarless garment worn over the "entari". In the Ottoman period, there were variations whose whole surface. Another group with embroidered lining can be seen.Yves Saint Laurent first used the kaftan shape on the catwalk for evening wear in the 1960s and 1970s. A few seasons ago, Tom Ford played homage to the design and sexed up the image of the kaftan by using flowing silk and animal prints.

The loose fitting garment--once thought beyond revival--has now achieved classic status and is available at all fashion-forward boutiques. There are many different types of beaded and hand embroidered Kaftans available in the Indian market today.

Even silk kaftans are extremely popular. The kaftan (sometimes spelt caftan) is a man`s cotton or silk cloak buttoned down the front, with full sleeves, reaching to the ankles and worn with a sash. It is traditional wear in the Eastern Mediterranean.The kaftans worn by the Ottoman sultans constitute one of the most splendid collections of Topkapi Palace in Istanbul. Some of them were so precious that they were given as rewards to important dignitaries and victorious generals during elaborate religious festivals.

Kaftans were often embroidered on the front and on the sleeves, but like everything else under the Ottomans, there was a strict hierarchical order in the colours, patterns, ribbons and buttons, which were chosen according to the rank of the person to which they were presented.

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