Traditional Clothes of Indonesia
Daily Life :: Traditional Clothes

In general, the people wear clothes that are similar to western style. They wear traditional dress on special occasions.

Men: Indonesian men generally wore sarongs (usually with a checkered pattern) in the home. In public, the sarong is worn only when attending Friday prayers at the mosque. For formal national occasions, the men wear batik shirts with trousers or teluk beskap, a combination of the Javanese jacket and sarong.

Women: For formal occasions, Indonesian women wear the kebaya -- a beautiful, figure-hugging embroidered blouse worn with a batik sarong that is usually dyed with flower motifs and in bright colours. On these occasions, women often tied their hair into a bun, or attached a false hairpiece. In addition, they may drape a long stretch of cloth, called "selendang", over one shoulder. This cloth can be used as a head shawl or on less formal occasions, used to carry babies or objects.

Traditional Dress: Indonesia has 300 ethnic groups; each has their own traditional dress variations.
  • The Minangkabau ethnic group is indigenous to the highlands of West Sumatra. Their traditional dress consists of silk robes with metallic thread woven into the material. Their headdress is shaped like buffalo horns.

  • The Toraja people live in the mountainous areas of South Sulawesi (Celebes). The women's traditional costume features elaborate beadwork and tassels.

    National Geographic Video: Sulawesi Funeral