What Makes Kosovorotka Become An Islamic Clothing

Nowadays there are many kinds of style in clothing. The style moves in a circle. What used to be a trend in the past has become a trending style again at this time. Style can also be affected by the weather. In the summer you will find people wear clothes in a brighter color, such as pink, yellow, and blue, with cheerful and fun motives. While in the winter, you can see clothes with a darker color and thicker layers everywhere.

When we are talking about clothes, we must also talk about traditional clothing. These clothes have a historical background which will help us to understand a little bit more about a certain culture. The traditional clothes can also be used as an inspiration to create a more modern style of clothing.

Every country has its own traditional clothing. Netherland traditional clothing is one of many examples. For women, they wear a head covering made of lace or stiff fabric. There are various sizes of hats. Some are small, some are long that it can touch your shoulders. There are not always ties on the hats either. For the clothes part, women must wear two layers. The outer layer is in dark color, sewed to the skirt, and has sleeves while the inner layer is white. One thing that makes Netherland traditional clothing is internationally famous is its shoes. The hand-carved and unpainted shoes called “Klompen” is still worn by farmers and the people of the rural wet area. To keep their feet warm and dry, the Dutch women will never forget to wear the hand-knitted thick woolen socks. These clothes are no longer common among the Dutch people but you can still see these traditional clothing in some towns like Staphorst, Bunschoten, and Spakenburg.

Just like Netherland, Russia also has its traditional clothing which is called Kosovorotka. Its style – mid-thigh length shirt with long sleeves – makes this clothing considered as part of Islamic clothing. So, what makes Kosovorotka Islamic Clothing? Let’s find out about that.

Kosovorotka As An Islamic Clothing

  • The Origin of Kosovorotka

The name of Kosovorotka originally came from two words, Koso and Vorot. Koso means askew while Vorot means collar. So from its name, we can already get the description of this particular clothing, which is a shirt with an askew collar. What makes this clothing, which first appeared in the 12th century, rather unique is the location of the buttons. Instead of sewed on the center like most shirts, the buttons are on the left side of the shirt.


This clothing was worn initially by peasants. At the time Kosovorotka was invented, the majority of Russians were peasants who because of their job spent a lot of time to bend down towards the ground. Most of them were Christians and wearing crucifix necklaces. There was a strict regulation that said this particular accessory must be worn under the shirts. The skewed collar of Kosovorotka prevented the necklace from falling out from under the shirt.

  • The Design of Kosovorotka

What makes Kosovorotka Islamic Clothing can be visually seen in its design. It has long sleeves and the length reaches the mid-thigh. The simple design is complemented by the buttons placed on the left side. You can also find the ones with the right-sided buttons. This variation is depended on the regional style. This very simple design makes it so easy to wear. You just need to unfasten the buttons to take off the clothes. When the shirt is in unbuttoned position, you will see the skewed collar. There is some traditional Slavic ornament on Kosovorotka that help to make this shirt no too plain. These ornaments are placed both on the collar and the sleeves.

What makes Kosovorotka Islamic clothing is also the size of it. This shirt is designed to be worn loose and not to be tucked into the trousers (for men). The most common thing to do is to put a belt, a rope, or a rope-like tie to tie the Kosovorotka around the waist. This shirt is also worn by women. There are two things that make it different from the men’s style. The first thing is women usually wear it under the Sarafan. The second thing is the buttons of women’s Kosovorotka are in the middle of the shirt.


Sarafan is Russian trapezoid-shaped jumper dress that used to be worn by peasants. It was used to be in a tight form but as times went by, it had become wider. The combination of Kosovorotka and Sarafan for sure would be a great addition to Muslim fashion. Nowadays, you can also find the plain version of Sarafan. It still goes great with the Kosovorotka and can function as a summer dress as well. This clothing is not only suitable for grownups, but also for children. Both boys and girls were used to wear this clothing. But since this is a long shirt, little girls and boys wore it as one piece of clothing.

Kosovorotka was a part of the everyday garment for a pretty long time. Until the early 20th century, peasants and townspeople, even the one from the high social categories, wore this clothing. After the October Uprising in 1917, the fashion style evolved rapidly and Kosovorotka was replaced by more efficient everyday clothes. However, this shirt remains popular. The great writer Tolstoy was used to wear it. It was also worn by Omar Sharif, an actor acted as Yuri Zhivago in a romantic drama movie “Doctor Zhivago”. These days it appears in many ensembles of folk music, song, and dance.

Now we know that its simple design is what makes Kosovorotka Islamic clothing. The shirt is long and worn loosely. It is beautifully ornamented by traditional Slavic accessories and some buttons. Next time, you can try to add this clothing into your mix and match routine 🙂

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