4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

When it comes to the skirts of the Ming Dynasty, many people will remember the typical “Mamian Qun (马面裙, horse face skirt)”, horse face often gives people a sense of elegance and wealth. It looks very dignified and gentle when matched with Han suit Ao (袄).

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

Introduction of Mamian Qun

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

Horse face skirt, also known as “horse face pleats skirt”, is a kind of traditional Chinese dress. There are four front and back skirt doors, overlapping each other, side pleating, middle skirt door overlapping part, commonly known as “horse face (马面)”. The horse face skirt originated in Qidan. The traditional Chinese dress has only one skirt door at the back, so you can’t ride a horse when wearing it. Nomadic people often ride horses, so they need to open four skirt doors, which is convenient for the left and right to split legs. The overlapping of skirt doors does not make the skirt open too much, which is a very practical dress. After the Liao Dynasty, the horse face skirt was very popular in yuan, Ming and Qing Dynasties, and it continued to the Republic of China.

 

What is Lan (襕)?

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

The whole circle of patterns on the horse face skirt ‘s is called Lan, the bottom is called bottom Lan, and the top is called knee Lan. Double Lan was very popular in the middle of the Ming Dynasty. But later, with the growth of women’s top in the Ming Dynasty, the knee Lan was gradually weakened because they were covered, while the bottoms Lan were widened and bold.

Why is it called “horse face”?

The question of why “horse face skirt” is named “horse face” has always been puzzling, What’s the relationship between the animal’s name and the skirt? In fact, “horse face” is a kind of structure used for defense in the city wall system. It looks like this:

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

But whether its name is really related to the city wall is still a question to be verified. Because all the books about “horse face skirt”, whether they are related to costumes, operas or cultural relics, only show that the smooth surface without pleats in the middle is called “horse face”, but there is no further explanation for the source of “horse face”.

[Horse face skirt] the name of the skirt, which is a traditional Chinese name. The two sides of the skirt are pleated, and there is a smooth section in the middle, commonly known as “Horse face”. Some of them are decorated with embroidery on horse face. According to the name of Western-style skirts, women’s skirts of this style are called “interval pleated skirts”. ——Dictionary of Chinese cultural relics

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

Four things you may not know about Mamian Qun

There are several easily misunderstood points about horse face skirt:

  1. “Horse face” is not added additionally. The pattern is originally in the structure of the skirt! In visual effect, it seems that the middle part is an independent one, but in fact, people are a structural one.
  2. Horse face skirt looks like a piece of cloth, but it’s actually two-piece. In fact, the two “horse faces” are not on the same cloth. A horse face skirt is a dress in which two pieces of cloth are sewn together by overlapping, and each piece of cloth is smooth at both ends and pleated in the middle, and the overlapping width is exactly the width of a smooth surface. Therefore, there is not only one “horse face” but four! Overlap each other and are symmetrical back and forth.4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt
  3. We can see from the cutting diagram of the horse dress that it is symmetrical back and forth!
  4. In fact, it’s not so much a skirt as trousers without trouser legs. Because the overlapping skirt door runs right through the front and back, and the side is closed instead, very suitable for activities when wearing.4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

Wearing of Mamian Qun

The upper Ao (袄) and lower skirt are typical collocations of women’s clothing in the Ming Dynasty. A horse face skirt or pleated skirt with Ao is called “Aoqun (袄裙, the name summed up by modern businesses.)”.

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

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4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt
4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

What is the Ming Dynasty Hanfu Clothing?

Ming Dynasty Hanfu clothing refers to the clothing system in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). At the beginning of the Ming Dynasty, Zhu Yuanzhang, the founder of the Ming Dynasty, inherited the costume style of Zhou, Han, Tang, and Song Dynasties and re-established the costume system in order to rebuild the national pride and etiquette and remove the influence of ethnic minorities. In the middle and later period of the Ming Dynasty, there were some new styles, such as stand collar, and a large number of buttons were used in the conspicuous part of a garment. It was gradually banned during the Qing Dynasty, but there are still a few styles and features that have been handed down to this day. The characteristics of Hanfu in the Ming dynasty In the Ming Dynasty, a series of measures were taken to develop production, which made the industry and commerce develop continuously, and…
4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt
4 Secrets about Hanfu Horse Face Skirt

What You Need to Know About Ming Dynasty Clothing

In recent years, Hanfu has received more and more attention. More and more Hanfu cultural festivals are being held in different cities in China, and worldwide, and thousands of Hanfu enthusiasts are participating in them. The Beauty of Hanfu Is in the Heritage So why is Hanfu so popular? In today's society, people have higher and higher requirements for aesthetics, and the special classical beauty of Hanfu attracts countless people to love it, and then to pay attention to it and understand it. So it is no wonder that Hanfu is so popular. And the beauty of Hanfu is not just on the surface, but in the thousands of years of traditional etiquette and civilization of the Chinese nation that it carries. Today we bring you some of the Hanfu collections from "Yi Guan Da Cheng-Ming Dynasty Costume Culture Exhibition", these collections come from the Shandong Museum and Confucius Museum,…
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