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The Story of Hanbok

H a nb ok A dva nc e me nt C e nt e r, a n a f f i l i at e d
organization of Korea Craft and Design Foundation
(KCDF), is established as a public institution of the
Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Korea.
The center is aiming at restoring the unique identity
of hanbok as the center of traditional culture, and
enhancing its competitiveness in a way that meet and
harmonize with modern needs and trends. Hanbok
has been a part of the lives of Koreans for about
5,000 years, and is characterized by the beauty of
abundance and softly flowing curved lines. The
Story of Hanbok is planned and written in order to
help wearing hanbok properly and beautifully, and is
well organized for the readers in a variety of cultures
to easily understand. Hopefully, this writing can
serve as a guide for the readers to fully appreciate the
grace and elegant beauty of hanbok .
The Story of Hanbok
TEL 82-2-739-0505
FAX 82-2-739-0330


publishing bdot PUBLISHING



01 The Esthetics of Lines, Hanbok 4

1. The Beauty of Hanbok in the Elegant Flow of Lines 5
2. Basic Hanbok for Men and Women 7
02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully? 13
1. The Order of Wearing Hanbok 14
2. How to Wear Underclothes of Hanbok 16
3. How to Wear Beoseon 17
4. How to Tie Goreum 18
5. The Proper Way of Wearing Mens Hanbok 20
6. The Proper Way of Wearing Womens Hanbok 24
7. The Stylish Look of Hanbok 26
8. Appropriate Posture When You Wear Hanbok 28
9. How to Keep Hanbok 29
03 The Story of Hanbok in History 33
Korean Traditional Clothes within Everyday Lives 34

of Lines,

1. The Beauty of Hanbok in
the Elegant Flow of Lines

For about 5000 years, the basic format of hanbok, Korean traditional
clothes, has more or less remained the same, while its forms or types
have seen changes with culture, situations and the aesthetic
consciousness of the times. The type of hanbok that we are familiar
with, which is composed of relatively tight tops and loose bottoms or
skirts, dates back to the mid and late Joseon Dynasty which was the
last dynasty in Korean history (1392~1910).
Mens hanbok is basically composed of baji (pants), jeogori
(Korean-style short jacket), jokki (vest) and po (outer coat), waist and
ankle straps for baji , beoseon (Korean-style socks) and shoes. Womens
hanbok is comprised of sokbaji (inner pants), sokchima (inner skirt),
sokjeoksam (inner shirt), jeogori , po, beoseon and shoes. Accessories
for hanbok include norigae (traditional ornaments for women), rings
and chignon ornaments, etc.
The outline of hanbok is very simple: the flat cloth is cut and
patterned in a straight line. When it comes to the sewing method,
however, the strict way of folding a seam is applied to all types of
hanbok ; and its git (collar), doryeon (the hemline of jeogori ) and
baerae (bottom line of the jackets sleeves) are sewn in a curved line.
There are some rules that you should follow when you wear hanbok ,
but after wearing it, its loose fit will be comfortable and allow you to
cover the flaws of your body shape. In contrast to Western clothing,
which achieves dimensionality through straight-lined fabric, hanbok
is made with f lat fabric in a linear shape that only achieves
dimensionality when it is worn on the body. When placed on the
human frame, the hanbok takes on a life of its ownone that is
natural, elegant and flowing. In other words, depending on the wearers
body shape and way of wearing it, the lines and shapes of clothes can
vary. Indeed, such natural lines of hanbok are one of its unique
aesthetic characteristics and make the wearers look more attractive.

01 The Esthetics of Lines, Hanbok

Also, when you wear hanbok , you wear several pieces of clothes in
layers, and these natural and voluminous clothes will create your own
unique style. Hanbok can be made with various kinds of cloth,
especially with cotton and wool, depending on the ways of weaving.
Even the clothes of the same design can look totally different when
their sheen and texture differ. Natural dyeing materials can create
various colors of dark and pale, deep and light, transparent and opaque
on the condition of the materials and dyeing methods.
Cloth of various colors contributes to the richness and diversity of
hanbok . In addition, kinds of cloth differ from four seasons, and
different kinds of cloth require different sewing methods. The sewing
lines are important in that the lines determine the complete look of the
wearer. Various types of hanbok can be made according to the texture
and the color of cloth or sewing methods, thereby creating a variety of
lines of hanbok . In the end, the beautiful lines of the hanbok depend on
the harmony of texture, colors and sewing lines of the clothes. Also,
only when the hanbok is worn, its lines come to life in perfection. Since
every component of hanbok represents ones wish for a better life, and
consideration of (or respect towards) others, it is safe to say that
hanbok contains the aesthetic and living philosophy of Koreans. One
can read the mind of the wearer and designer through its beautiful lines
of hanbok . In a sense, hanbok has somewhat contradictory
characteristics: simple but diverse; flat but voluminous. Also, hanbok
represents the wearers aesthetic sense and deep insights. Indeed,
hanbok , the traditional clothing of the Korean people and currently
worn as formal dress, amplifies the wearers natural physical and
spiritual beauty.

2. baSiC hanbok
for Men and woMen
The kinDs of CloThes Comprising mens
Modern male hanbok (Korean traditional clothing) is comprised of
baji (pants), jeogori (basic upper garment), baeja (traditional vest),
jokki (vest) and durumagi (overcoat), etc.

BAjI Mens trousers are wide, and are composed of marupok, sapok

jEOGORI Jeogori is composed of gil, somae, git, seop, dongjeong and

goreum. The front of jeogori is opened, so it is worn by
folding from left to right and adjusted with the goreums .
01 The Esthetics of Lines, Hanbok

The Types of mens Hanbok

Baeja B
 aeja are sleeveless clothes worn over jeogori , which has a
symmetrical git (collar), and is adjusted with goreum or buttons.

JOKKI Jokki are sleeveless clothes worn over jeogori , and jokki are
similar to a western-style vest. Koreans began to wear this type of
vest from the late 19th century (specifically the time when the
Joseon Dynasty developed into a modern state). Its design, since
then, has changed little.

Magoja M
 agoja are sleeveless and collarless clothes worn over jokki ,
and is adjusted with buttons. Koreans have traditionally worn
magoja in winter with jokki as a body warmer since the late
19th century.
Durumagi D
 urumagi is an outer jacket for both men and women for
special or formal occasions. It is also worn in winter as a
body warmer.


The kinDs of CloThes Comprising Womens

Womens hanbok is composed of chima (a wrap-around skirt) and
jeogori . There are different types of jeogori such as banhoijang jeogori ,
samhoijang jeogori (jeogori with a different color patches on different
parts) and saekdong jeogori (jeogori with multicolor striped sleeves).

CHIMA Chima is comprised of pleats, and waist strings.

jEOGORI Jeogori is composed of gil, somae, git, seop, dongjeong and

goreum. The front of jeogori is opened, so it is worn by
folding from left to right and adjusted with the goreums .

The Types of Womens Jeogori

Min jeogori a type of jeogori with plain git and goreum without hoijang.

Hoijang jeogori (jeogori with a different color of patches

in different parts) Hoijang jeogori is a kind of jeogori. It has git (a
collar), goreum (straps attached to jeogori ) and kkeutdong (a cuff
attached to sleeves) which has a different color from the body part of
jeogori .

Samhoijang jeogori (jeogori with different colored

patches in different parts including gyeotmagi ) Samhoijang
jeogori is a kind of jeogori of which git (collar), goreum (straps attached
to jeogori), kkeutdong (a cuff attached to sleeves) and gyeotmagi (a
patch attached to the armpit part of jeogori ) have a different color from
the main part of jeogori.

Saekdong jeogori Saekdong jeogori is a kind of jeogori with

multicolor striped sleeves

The Esthetics of Lines, Hanbok

The Basic Terms Concerning Hanbok

Baerae Bottom curves of the sleeves of jeogori , to be

more specific, the part ranging from the end of
the sleeve to the jindong .
Daenim A string to be tied around the ankle part of mens
hanbok .
Gil The broad body part of upper garment.
Git the neckline part of jeogor i.
Godae backside of the git which is attached between
shoulder seams.
Goreum Two strings attached to the front part of jeogori
or durumagi in order to fold the clothes.
Gyeotmagi The armpit part of jeogori .
Hoijang A kind of female jeogori which has git, kkeutdong,
gyeotmagi and goreum of different colors from
the body part of jeogori .
Kkeutdong A cloth of a different color attached to the edges
of the sleeves of jeogor i.
Seop A cloth attached to the front part of upper
garments such as jeogori or durumagi , in order
to prevent them from being opened.
SUNUK The seams of beoseon .

How to

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

1. How to Wear
Hanbok Properly
When you wear underclothes and outer garment of hanbok in proper
order, it will make an elegant look.

Hanbok for males is worn this way

As for men, the wearing order differs depending on the type of hanbok ,
but when you follow the order below, you can create your own classy look.

Baji, Jeogori Baeja Durumagi

Baji,Jeogori JOKKI Magoja Durumagi

Hanbok for females is worn this way
As for women, you will look fabulous in hanbok when you wear
underclothes and outer garment properly.

Beoseon, Sokbaji, Sokchima Chima

Sokjeoksam Jeogori

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

2. How to wear
underclothes of Hanbok
1. For men, just wear basic underclothes. Be careful not to let
undershirts be seen through v-shaped collar of jeogori .

2. Women wear basic underclothes, brassiere without pad or wire,

sokbaji (underpants), and then wear sokchima (underskirt) over it.
When you wear hanbok , however, it is more appropriate not to wear
top underwear (brassiere) under the upper garments. Sokchima
should be shorter than outer chima . Depending on the types of outer
skirts and occasions, you can choose between narrow sokchim a and
wide sokchima . Sokjeoksam (undershirt) is an option in modern-day
hanbok . You can choose to wear or not to wear sokjeoksam
depending on seasons or fabrics of jeogori .

3. how To wear beoSeon
(TradiTionaL korean SoCkS)

1. how to Distinguish the left one from the right one

Based on the margin to seam in the center of beoseon , you can
distinguish the left one from the right one. When you wear beoseon ,
place its seam, so that it faces outside. So on your right beoseon , the
seam should face the right side, while on your left beoseon , the margin
to seam should face the left side. (see the red arrow)

2. how to Wear beoseon

Wear beoseon carefully in a way that places the margin to seam of
each beoseon to face outward. To be more specific, place the seam of
the right beoseon to face the right side and the left beoseon to face the
left side, while leaving the center seam line between your big toe and
the second toe, which makes your feet look smaller and beautiful. If
you are a man, you can wear white socks instead of beoseon .

4. how To Tie goreuM

(STraPS aTTaChed To Jeogori )


1 Hold two straps using both hands, place the short goreum attached
to the right-side gil (panels of fabric that make up the body of jeogori )
over the long goreum.
2 Wrap the long goreum with the short goreum, and pull the shorter
one down, around and outside. Then you will be holding two goreums
in your hands.


3 Make a loop in the shape of a half-ribbon using the short goreum.
4 Insert a folded long goreum through the loop of short goreum which
was made in the previous step.
5 While pulling the folded long goreum upwards up to the end part of the left
godae, pull the short goreum downwards so that the two goreums can be
6 Adjust the two goreums that you have just tied, and leave them hanging
18 naturally.
3 Make a loop in the shape of half-ribbon using the long goreum.
4 Wrap the loop made in the step 3 with the short goreum, and tie
5 Pull the short goreum out and downwards and adjust them. Pull the
left goreum only up to the end part of the left godae. Let the two
goreums hang naturally.

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

5. The Proper Way of

Wearing Mens Hanbok
There are two ways of wearing modern male hanbok: wearing baeja
or wearing jokki and magoja . You can wear both of them properly by
following the instruction of when you wear baeja and when you
wear jokki and magoja .

When wearing Baeja

Wear Underclothes Wear Baji (pants)Wear Jeogori Wear Baeja
(traditional vest)Wear Durumagi (overcoat)Adjust the Clothing

1. Wear Underclothes (See pp.16~17)

2. Wear Baji (pants)

Tie waist straps

1 Wear pants with wide sapok on the right leg.
2 Hold the loose part of the pants on the right side using both hands
and fold it over to the left.
3 Make a knot with waist straps in the same way used in the goreum to
hold up baji (pants).
1 Place the center stitch of pants on the inner ankle bone.
2 Fold the excess bottom of pants inside out to be adjusted around the
outer ankle bone.
3 Place the center of daenim on the inner ankle bone.
4,5 Wrap around the ankle with daenim from inside out so that the end
of daenim is at the back at the inner ankle bone.

6,7 Tie the daenim at the inner ankle bone, and make a knot in the same
way of tying the goreum.
8 Pull down the bottom parts of the pants slightly so that daenim is

In principle, the color of daenim should be the same as that of baji ,

but in order to help the understanding of readers, the colors of each
are different in the picture.

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

3. Wear Jeogori
1 If jeogori has inner coat-strings, tie them. If jeogori has an outer snap
button, adjust jeogori with that button.
2 After tying goreum, pull jeogori slightly to the front to prevent the
collar and the shoulder seam from being seen on the back.

4. Wear Baeja (traditional vest)

1 Wear baeja over jeogori . Adjust the clothes with buttons and give it a
finishing touch by tying goreum. If baeja does not have goreum, just
fastening the button is fine.
2 Baeja is a type of sleeveless clothes. You should be careful to prevent
its shoulder seam from appearing on the back.

5. Wear Durumagi (overcoat)

1 Wear durumagi over baeja, and tie inner goreum inside the clothes.
2 Tie outer goreum as in the case of jeogori . Adjust the shoulder seam
line by leaning forward a little bit, and pull the clothes into shape.

6. Adjust the Clothing

After putting on durumagi , smooth out creases in the clothes, adjust
the hemline of the sleeves so that the sleeves of jeogori do not stick out.
When going outside, choose to wear shoes that can go well with the
hanbok that you are wearing.


Wear UnderclothesWear Baji (pants)Wear Jeogori Wear Jokki (vest)

Wear Magoja (outer coat)Wear Durumagi (overcoat)
Adjust the Clothing

The way of wearing 1. underclothes, 2. baji , and 3. jeogori is the same

as the cases mentioned above.(See pp.16~22)

4. Wear jokki (vest)

Wear jokki over jeogori and adjust the clothes with buttons. Be careful
not to let the shoulder seam line appear on your back.

5. Wear Magoja (outer coat)

1 Wear magoja over jokki . Magoja has unique
buttons on its front, so pay attention to
them when you fasten the buttons.
2 Insert buttons in each button hole of the
clothes inside out, and leave them hanging
3 A s in the case of jeogori , adjust the shoulder
seam line to be seen from the front and pull
the clothes into shape.

6. Wear Durumagi
The way mentioned above applies here as well.(See p.22)

7. Adjust the Wearing

Smooth out creases of jeogori , magoja and durumagi . Adjust the
clothes so that the hemline of the sleeves of jeogori and magoja do not
stick out of durumagi .


6. The ProPer way of

wearing woMenS hanbok
Wear UnderclothesWear outer Chima (skirt) Wear Sokjeogori
(inner jeogori )Wear Geotjeogori (outer jeogori )
Adjustment the Wearing

1. Wear underclothes (see How to Wear Hanbok Properly section)

(See pp.16~17)
2. Wear outer Chima (skirt)

1 Have your arms inserted in shoulder strings. Place the right-end of

chima over the left-end of it. Wrap it clockwise
2 Pull out the string of the left pleat of your skirt under the armhole and
bring it to the front.
3 Pull the string of the right pleat of your skirt counter-clockwise and
bring it to the front.
4 Adjust the skirts to be fixed and tie the two strings brought to the
front. Tuck the excess part of the strings in the tied string, so that it
cannot be seen outside jeogori.
The direction the pleat of your skirt is wrapped around differs from
region to region: the right side of the pleat can be placed over the left
side (clockwise) or vice versa (counterclockwise). But the former, which
is placing the right pleat over the left (clockwise), is preferable.

3. Wear sokjeogori (inner jeogori)
You should wear sok-jeaksam (inner shirt) or sok-jeogori (inner jeogori ),
especially when your clothes are thin.

4. Wear geotjeogori (outer jeogori)

Adjust dongjeong (white collar attached along the rim of the neckline)
by adjusting it with inner strings or snaps and tie the outer goreum.
Adjust doryeon (the hemline of jeogori ) to fully cover the inner jeogori.

5. adjustment
1 Lean your body forward to adjust the shoulder seam line to be seen
from the front. Smooth out the creases of gil (panels of fabric that
make up the body of jeogori ) and sleeves.
2 Adjust the waistline of skirt so that it cannot be seen outside the
hemline of jeogori . Be careful not to expose beoseon under the skirts,
but only to show the tip of beoseon .
3 Try to match shoes that go well with hanbok when you go outside.

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

7. The stylish look of


Hanbok with accessories

When Worn with Norigae

(Korean traditional ornaments worn by women)
1. When it comes to a norigae with a string, hang them over the left
shoulder string of chima .
2. When it comes to a norigae with a loop, insert the long goreum of
jeogori in the loop, and then tie goreum .

When Worn with Other Accessories

One of the hanboks characteristics is that its wearers neckline looks
graceful. In this regard, it is better to avoid wearing necklaces and
earrings to highlight the lines of the wearer. However, if you have to,
choose a simple pair of earrings that can be attached to your earlobes
rather than elongated ones.

hair sTyling anD make-up
neat and tidy hairstyle, especially one that makes your neckline and
collar stand out, and goes well with hanbok . If you are a woman
with medium-long or long hair, it is better to bind your hair up. Try
decorating your hair with a chignon ornament that goes well with
the color of your hair and clothes, then it will make a great hair
styling of you. If your hair is short, then just make it tidy and neat.
If you are a girl with long hair, it is best to have your hair braided and
decorated with daenggi (a ribbon used to tie and decorate long hair),
and for a girl with medium-length hair, bind it up, and a girl with
short hair, just make it neatly combed. Children will look more
stylish when their hair is ornamented with daenggi .
It depends on the time, place, or clothes that you are wearing, but
wearing light make-up is recommended, and the same goes for lip
make-up. Steer clear of dark or heavy lip liner and choose the color
that can go well with the colors of hanbok that you are wearing.


Part your hair in the middle. As for

the hair in the back, bind it up half.
As for the hair left on the sides, wear
it in two braids, or have it twisted to
one direction and tied together with
your hair in the back. The hair pulled
together can be wrapped with a
hairnet or fixed with a pin, which
leads to a tidy look.

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

8. Appropriate posture
when you wear Hanbok

Standing posture
Stand naturally with your heels together and your toes facing
outwards. Keep your head erect and pull down your chin. Keep your
knees, buttocks and waist straight. Keep your shoulder in line and do
not bend the shoulder forward or backward. Naturally straighten
yourself up.
Distribute your weight on both legs evenly so that your body does not
lean to either side. Put your hands together in front of your body.

Sitting posture
When You Sit on the Floor Do not sit in front of elders. If you are a
man, sit on the right across from elders. If you are a woman, sit on the
left across from elders. Sit up straight and keep your eyes on the floor
a few meters ahead of you.
Bend down the left knee first and then right knee, and then sit. If you
are a man, put your hands together in front of your body. If you are a
woman, put your hands on the right knee. If you are a man, adjust
your durumagi to prevent it from being spread out. If you are a
woman, pay attention to the pleats of your chima to prevent them
from being spread out.
When you sit on a cushion, be careful not to step on it. Sit on the
center of a cushion with your tip toes placed on the edge of the
cushion. While sitting up, straighten your knees with two hands
pushing slightly the cushion, so that the cushion does not move.
Sit comfortably when the elderly tell you to do so. Men sit cross-
legged on the floor and women sit with one knee drawn up. Be
careful not to lean on the wall or furniture or not to hold onto the
floor or not to sit on leaning one side, or not to stretch out both legs.
When You Sit on a Chair If you are a man, adjust your durumagi . If
you are a woman, adjust the pleats of your chima in order not to
make creases on them while sitting on. If you are a woman, it is better
to pull the outer pleats of your chima slightly upwards not to make
creases on the clothes.

9. how To
keeP hanbok

When you iron hanbok

Iron hanbok with an iron on the silk mode.
upper garment iron the lining first, and then the lining of doryeon
(hemline of jeogori ) and then buri (hemline of sleeves). Press the
linings slightly while ironing them, in order to keep them from
sticking out. When it comes to ironing outer upper garment, keep the
following order for ironing: back gil, back sleeves, front gil , front
sleeves, inner git, outer git , and goreum .
baji iron narrow sapok , wide sapok , and then waist part along the
seam line.
Chima iron lining of the bottom part and its column first. Iron from
bottom to top. When you iron pleats, you should not iron the upper
part of pleats which are within 5 to 6 inches from the waistline of
others if clothes have gold or silver gilts and embroideries, put
another cloth on them when ironing. If you directly iron the clothes
without any additional cloth put on, the gilts will come off and the
embroideries will get discolored.

1 2

3 4

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

How to properly fold Hanbok

Jeogori (a) When jeogori is kept in a box or a drawer: spread

jeogori , fold goreum neatly and put it over the collar. Fold the two
sleeves toward gil. If the box or drawer is small, fold the gil and
sleeves one more time. Be careful not to make creases on git (collar)
and dongjeong (white collar attached along the rim of the
(b) When jeogori is kept on a hanger: if you wear the jeogori often,
adjust the line of jeogori to fit a hanger and allow the sleeves hang

Chima (a) When chima is kept in a box or a drawer: fold the chima
in half along the seam line. If there is not enough room in the box,
fold it one more time.
(b) When chima is kept on a hanger: tie the waist with strings and
hang it over a hanger.

Mens jeogori Fold goreum neatly and put it over collar. Fold the
two sleeves toward gil . If the box or drawer is small, fold the folded
gil and sleeves one more time. Be careful not to make a mess of git
and dongjeong while folding the clothes.

Baji Fold baji lengthways once and fold it along the width two or
three times.

Baeja and Jokki Fold baeja and jokki along the width. If there is not
enough room in the box or drawer, fold them lengthways. Be
careful not to spoil its collar or neckline.

 agoja Fold the sleeves toward the collar, and fold the clothes in

Durumagi Fold goreum neatly and fold it over the collar. Fold the
sleeves toward the collar. Fold both mu (side gores) while folding
the collar and the sleeves by the width of mu one more time. Fold
the clothes lengthwise two to three times.

02 How to Wear Hanbok Beautifully

How to keep Hanbok

Depending on the season, occasion and material, you can put

insecticides and desiccants in the box in which you store the hanbok,
which is important in order to prevent dampness or insects from
discoloring or damaging the clothes. It is best to keep folded hanbok
wrapped with hanji , Korean traditional paper, and put them in a
drawer or a box, since it can serve as a natural insecticide and
desiccant. Wrap different colors of hanbok with different hanji in
order to prevent the clothes from being discolored. But you must
wash the clothes before putting them in a box. Also, it is good to have
the clothes dry cleaned to minimize damage to the fabric.

If you are to keep hanbok in a box, use the following

picture as a reference.
It is best to keep folded hanbok wrapped with hanji , Korean traditional
paper, and put them in a box

Story of
in History

03 The Story of Hanbok in History

Korean Traditional
Clothes within
Everyday Lives

Korean history includes all the things such as clothes, food and
shelter that have influenced the everyday lives of Koreans and have
been with them. Among them, the clothes of Korean give us an
opportunity to look into the situation of the times and to better
understand the identity of Koreans. It is difficult to find out exactly
when Koreans began to make and wear clothes, but based the fact that
relics from the Neolithic Age included hemp yarn, bone needle, and
spinning wheels, we can assume that Koreans have made and worn
clothes since then.
Korean people have worn different types of clothes depending on
their age, sex and social occasion throughout their lives. Koreans have
had a new born baby wear white baenaet jeogori wishing for his or her
health and longevity. A hundred days after the birth, the family
members have had the baby wear clothes made of 100 pieces of cloths
or quilts, wishing for his or her well-being. On the first birthday of a
baby, which is called dol in Korean, people have had the baby wear
dolbok (clothes for a one-year-old baby) with multi-color sleeves.
Patterns and colors of the dolbok represent the wish for the wearers
health and luck.

A boys dolbok having navy git, kkeutdong and goreum at the sleeves and purple mu .

In a wedding ceremony which is one of the most important
ceremonies of ones life, Koreans used to wear splendid and colorful
ceremonial clothes. Clothes for wedding ceremony represent the hope
and wish for health and happiness of the bride and groom. Grooms
used to wear dallyeongpo and samo . Brides used to wear hwalot
embroidered with lotus, peony, a child monk, etc., all of which are the
symbol of married couples long and happy union till death them to
part and hwagwan; or wonsam and jokduri . When ones parents were
alive when the person turned hoi-gap (61 years old in Korean age), the
person used to see his parent wearing o-bang-jang durumagi ,
jeonbok and bokgun as in the case of dol (one year old in Korean age)
Sangbok is clothes for funerals which is white and simple; and
represents sorrow for the death and a low-key attitude. At ancestral
rites, one used to wear white or jade-green and simple clothes to show
respect toward ones ancestors. Likewise, we can find ones wish for
living a better life in harmony with others in Korean clothes.

O-bang-jang durumagi , worn in the banquet celebrating hoigap

03 The Story of Hanbok in History

CLOTHING of Korean People, from Crown

to Toe
The origin of hanbok dates back to the Neolithic Age. One cannot know
the exact form of clothes of the Age, but we can assume that the clothes of
the times were made of animal skin or hem cloth. Since then, a two-piece
format attire (influenced by Scythian attire) has taken root in Korea, with
the characteristics of horse-riding people living in the North being added.
This has become a basic form of hanbok.
In the Three Kingdoms Period of Goguryeo, Baekje and Silla, various
types of clothes were made. In the process of ancient state building, the
institution of costumes was arranged and established. What is noteworthy
is that this is when the basic composition of hanbok including baji, jeogori,
chima and po was created. Based on the caste system, the attire began to be
categorized into those for the nobility and for ordinary people. The clothes
of the king and the nobility were splendid and colorful to represent the
wearers wealth and power. As for public officials, depending on their rank
and status, the color of their official hat, decorations of the official and the
clothes were designed to be different. Even though the clothes slightly
differed from kingdom to kingdom, the basic form of hanbok was similar
in Goguryeo, Baekje and Silla. The details of hanbok of this period can be
found on the mural paintings of the ancient tombs of Goguryeo.
Upper garment jeogori and po had straight git (collar) and were adjusted
with it. On the border of the clothes were there decorative lines, and the
sleeves were narrow. Jeogori was long enough to cover the wearers
bottom; and po was long enough to cover the calves and it had waist
strings. There were different types of baji including wide-legged, narrow
legged types and so on. The types of footwear also varied, including both
shoes and boots. In this period, men wore hats decorated with feathers.

A men during the times of Goguryo A woman of Goguryo dressed in

dressed in baji and joegori while wearing pleated skirt and jeogori
jowoogwan decorated with bird feather
on his head. (Murals from the tombs of the
Goguryo Dynasty)
Assuming the Nations Stability and
Richness through Peoples Splendid
Since the unified the Silla period, the types of attire were divided into
the original form of hanbok and foreign-style hanbok imported from
China. Thats because the clothes of the Silla Dynasty began to be
influenced by the clothes of the Tang dynasty, especially luxury clothes
of the ruling class, since the Silla became actively engaged in trade and
exchanges of goods with the Tang after unification of the three
kingdoms. At that time, ones status was distinguished by the clothes
they wore. However, when luxurious clothing habits began to
negatively affect the caste system of the country and its economy, In
834, King Heungdeok , the 42nd King in the history of the Silla
Dynasty, imposed limits on the clothing culture of ordinary people in
order to prevent excessive spending on clothing. Considering the fact
that this measure limited the types and fabrics of clothes that people of
a particular status could wear, we can assume that there were various
types and fabrics of clothes.
The nobility used to wear dallyeongpo as their official clothes which
were imported from the Tang Dynasty, and ordinary men and women
used to wear the usual hanbok with Banbi (an outer coat with short
sleeves) which was also imported from the Tang. As for women, they
wore dang-ui which is short jeogori worn over underclothes. On
special occasions, they wore pyo-ui (a type of po) and tied waist straps
made of cloth over it. Over pyo-ui , only women wore baedang
(sleeveless clothes which is a type of baeja ). However, those foreign
types of clothes were not accessible to ordinary people.

Male and female toyong s (dolls made of clay) dressed

in long po , Age unknown, Housed in Chonbuk
National University

03 The Story of Hanbok in History

Foreign cultures have changed some

clothing habits of Koreans
Even after the Goryeo (918-1392) dynasty was established, ordinary
men and women still wore the clothes of the Silla period, but the nobility
began to embrace the clothes of the Song, Yuan and Ming dynasties. At
the same time, they began to create the institution of costume on their
own, so the clothes of the king and public officials saw changes in some
ways. In particular, during the late Goryeo period, dress culture was
influenced by that of Mongolia and the clothes of the Yuan Dynasty
were very popular. At that time, a trend called Mongopung emerged.
Similarly, the clothes of Goryeo gained traction in Mongolia were
called Goryeoyang by the locals. The clothing of both the Mongolian
and Goryeo dynasties had a mutual influence on one another, and thus
dictated their development. Some of the custom and clothes that were
created at the time remain today. Meanwhile, the form of hanbok
began to change gradually since then. The bottom-length jeogori
became shorter so that it came to only cover the waistline. Also, the
upper garment was worn held together with knotted buttons, a style
influenced by the clothes of the Yuan Dynasty. The sleeves became
wider and long enough to cover ones hands. When it comes to womens
skirts, women wore skirts with a lot of frills. Baekjepo made of ramie
were very popular with both men and women.

A look in white baekjepo . Korean A look in po over chima and jeogori

national treasure which covers the waistline.

Proper clothing can lead to appropriate
manners and etiquette
The clothes of the Goryeo period had remained unchanged until the
early Joseon Dynasty, but began to change gradually and developed
their own unique style. During the early Joseon period, Koreans
embraced the clothes of the Ming and the Qing dynasties in their
existing form, but then began to make their own clothes independently.
Also, one of the characteristics of clothing in the Joseon dynasty was the
abundance of clothes for ceremonial occasions. The ruling principle of
the Joseon kingdom was Confucianism so that the manners were of
paramount importance. Confucianism also guided the norms of daily
life. Therefore, the clothes also had to be designed in a way that showed
respect and kept ones manners. Codes such as Gyeongguk daejeon or
Gukjo oryeui specified the details of clothes for the king, the nobility and
ordinary people. In other words, according to the law, the wearer had to
wear clothes with certain colors, patterns, fabrics, materials and
accessories, according to their social status. Also, the ruling class both
wore imported attire as well as native dress depending on the situation,
even though Joseon had its own sartorial institutions. Ordinary people
wore indigenous clothing, which has also seen changes over time.

Samhoijang jeogori has additional cloth attached to git, goreum ,

kkeutdong and gyeotmagi .

Cheolik , mens outer coat that is made by sewing pleated skirt and jeogori together.

03 The Story of Hanbok in History

A court robe. Dang -ui with patterns representing ones wish for longevity and good luck.

(the left side) Hyang -gap norigae (fragrant Hwa-gwan (coronet)

norigae ) / Norigae is a traditional ornament ornamented with various
that women used to hang on the goreum types of jewelry
or on the chima heor i (the waist of the skirt)
while dressing up. (the right side) Jasu geobuk
norigae (norigae embroidered with turtles)

One kind the womens clothing, jeogori, which had been waist
length, shortened to breast length in the mid and late Joseon period,
hence the look of a tight top and loose skirt. The jacket, which makes
the upper body look very small, while the skirt worn wrapped around
the waist makes the lower body look full, creates an attractive balance.
Clothes for ordinary men were further diversified, and there were
various types of po such as dallyeong, dapo, cheolik , and aekjureumpo.
Since the 17th century, the details of those clothes also began to
change. In addition, the various types of outer coats meant that men
enjoyed more freedom in outer coat styling than women did. The basic
clothing culture has not changed much, but over time, the types have
become varied and the unique aesthetic style with unique clothes and
ornaments has developed. Based on this, we can say that the history of
hanbok reflects the gentle but persistent characteristics of the Korean
people and their enduring sense of national identity.
Costume Design & ProductionGRETA LEE

Costume and Accessory cooperation

Obangjang Durumagi (clothes for a one-year-old baby)LEE YOUNG YIM
Obangjang Durumagi (clothes for 60-year-old birthday), Hwagwan KIM IN JA
DANG-UI, Samhoijang jeogori GRETA LEE

The courtesy of images (the PART 3)

Portrait of Jo Bans wifeNATIONAL MUSEUM OF KOREA
Male and female toyong s (dolls made of clay)CHON-BUK NATIONAL UNIVERSITY


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9 788997 252404
ISBN 978-89-97252-40-4
ISBN 978-89-97252-40-4