Chinese New Year Clothes

Written by Apple Updated Jan. 19, 2023

Chinese people usually make preparations one week before the Chinese New Year, including shopping for new clothes.

What do Chinese people wear for the new year and why? Read on to find out more about Chinese New Year clothes.

When to Wear New Clothes?

Chinese people usually shop for new clothes weeks before the Spring Festival and wear the new clothes on the first day of the Chinese New Year. 

Wearing new clothes on the first day of the Chinese New Year is a traditional custom for festivity. 

Why Wear New Clothes for the New Year?

Wearing new year's clothes has long been a tradition of the Spring Festival.

In ancient times when in the absence of material resources, people cannot afford to make new clothes often. After a year of hard work, people would make new suits or clothes for themselves to welcome the new year.

wear new clothes on Chinese New Year
Wearing new clothes on Chinese New Year

Wearing new clothes on the first day of the Chinese New Year saying goodbye to the old and welcoming the new. It is a part of the celebration.

Another reason for wearing new clothes on Chinese New Year's Day is that people believe wearing new clothes for the new year can ward off evil spirits, and bring good luck.

Today, new year clothes have new significance. It is not only the inheritance and development of traditional culture but also represents the pursuit of higher quality of life and the recognition of aesthetic value.

What to Wear for the Chinese New Year? 

There are no specific standards for what type or style of new clothes to wear during Chinese New Year, anything you like will do. 

New Year Clothes with Red Color

People usually wear new clothes with red color during Chinese New Year. In Chinese culture, red is considered an auspicious color. It symbolizes happiness, passion, and good fortune. That is why Chinese people wear red clothes or accessories during the festival.

People believe that wearing red clothes during the Spring Festival has the effect of warding off evil spirits and bringing good luck. Red is an especially lucky color for you in your zodiac year.

Chinese New Year Clothes
People like to wear red clothes for the Chinese New Year

Traditional New Year Clothes

Although Chinese people usually don't wear traditional clothes in their daily lives. Traditional Chinese clothing such as Han Chinese clothes (Hanfu), Chinese suits (Tangzhuang), and cheongsams (Qipao) are still popular choices for the Chinese new year.

1. Traditional Han Chinese Clothes (Hanfu): Traditional Han Chinese clothes (called "Hanfu" in Chinese) are the traditional clothing worn by people during the Han Dynasty (221 - 206 BC).

A complete traditional Han clothes dress includes a long robe, a jacket, and a skirt. With its beautiful colors and designs, Hanfu is a popular choice for new year's clothes. 

2. Chinese suit (Tangzhuang): Tang suit (Tangzhuang) is a type of traditional Chinese suit that combines the Manchu male jacket of the Qing Dynasty (1616 - 1912) and the western style suit.

During the Chinese New Year, people usually wear Tangzhuang in red and gold colors.

Chinese New Year Clothes, tangzhuang
Tangzhuang

3. Cheongsams (Qipao): The cheongsam, also known as a qipao, originated from the Manchu clothes. The dress features a straight collar, coiled buttons, and a tight-fitting design.

Cheongsams are normally made of silk or cotton. They are not only a popular type of clothes for festive celebrations such as the Chinese New Year but also one of the most popular Chinese attire in the world today. 

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