Traditional Moroccan Clothing

Traditional Moroccan Clothing

Moroccan clothing is full of rich traditions and many of the clothes worn by locals are an integral part of the culture and Moroccan identity. While numerous Moroccans, especially those from the younger generations, opt to wear modern Western garments for day-to-day life, special occasions and ceremonial events typically see a return to traditions.

Traditional Moroccan clothes are often not only attractive, but the long, loose, and flowing garments are both compliant with religious beliefs and practical for keeping cool in the hot and sunny conditions.

Traditional clothing for women and men in Morocco consists of long flowing robes with hoods or headscarves and traditional slippers. Made out of harmonious colors and luxurious fabrics, these magnificent costumes have been cultivated since the ancient times of Moroccan history, and still are a part of the living tradition of the country today.


Djellabas are a type of loose long item of clothing that can be worn by people of both sexes. They have long sleeves and usually, a pointed hood as well. The item of traditional clothing most commonly associated with Morocco, it has Berber roots, and thus can be found in other North African lands where Berbers settled, for example Algeria and Tunisia. The djellaba bziwiya, however, originated in Morocco’s town of Bzou and is unique to the country. The fabric is much thinner than a regular djellaba and it can take up to a month to hand-make one.

Woolen djellabas are the most traditional, but cotton djellabas are becoming increasingly popular too. Naturally, woolen garments are favoured in the cooler winter months, while light-weight cotton dellabas are preferable on hot, sunny days. Colours vary and the garment can be won in many different settings, from day-to-day activities to at special occasions.


The kaftan is another long and flowing type of robe-like dress worn a lot in Morocco. Unlike the djellaba, though, the kaftan is only worn by women. Historically, however, it was the ceremonial dress of judges.

The kaftan was also once strongly associated with royalty and nobility, though its use spread to the general populace during the Saadian dynasty.

Kaftans are usually ornate and decorative, with beautiful braiding, beads, and sequins sewn onto luxurious fabrics. The kaftan is made from various materials, including wool and cotton, but the fanciest kaftans are made from fine silk or luscious velvet.

Kaftans are not generally worn outside the home for performing everyday tasks, rather, Moroccan ladies don an attractive kaftan for special occasions. Plainer kaftans, made from regular materials, may also be in a lady’s casual wardrobe.

In some nations, kaftans are worn as an outer garment, whereas in Morocco they are worn like a dress. Moroccan kaftans may have long or short sleeves, which may be fitted or loose. Although the kaftan is a loose garment, some ladies add a wide, matching belt to give more shape and definition.


Another Moroccan item of clothing worn by women, the tackchita is perhaps the most formal and beautiful ladies’ garment. It is not an item for everyday wear, but is reserved for special occasions such as weddings.

As with fancy kaftans, the tackchita often has stunning designs and details. A two-piece item of clothing, it has an under-dress and an over-dress.

The over-dress is generally a lot more patterned and detailed than the under section, and a wide belt is worn over the two pieces to make it more fitted around the waist.

Usually fitted around the top and cinched in at the waist, the tackchita then flows to the ground in a majestic manner. The top later may button up the front completely, or may be buttoned only to the waist, allowing the lower part of the under-dress to show through


Worn by women in more cold and conservative areas of Morocco, the haik is a traditional white outdoor costume, made of silk and wool. It covers the whole body except the face and hands.

This large piece of garment is a symbol of modesty and discretion


In the Sahara, men wear a loose gandoura open on the side called the Deraa. Thus, it keeps the body ventilated. The golden seams on the front are usually handmade. Sahrawis wear quandrissi pants under their gandoura: a traditional baggy pants that allows men to sit more comfortably on the floor. The Deraa comes usually in two colors, the blue Deraa is worn for the everyday life and the white one is for wedding and other special occasions


Also known as the babouche, the balgha is a traditional type of shoe in Morocco. Soft and slipper like, the leather footwear can be worn both inside and outdoors. (It’s still normal, though, to take shoes off when walking on carpets in a home.) Balgha are made in various colours and range from the rather plain to those that are ornately decorated.

Traditionally made in Fez, the slippers are found in souks all across the nation. While sturdier shoes are often preferred today for everyday activities, the balgha is often worn for special events and during religious celebrations.


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