The traditional costumes here are beautiful. You don’t get to see them often but the glimpses you get show rich fabrics, ornamental decoration and hats – always head dresses and hats of all shapes and descriptions.
I haven’t been in a position to take original photos of them but I did go to a store where there was a wide variety of them. Take note of the background articles too which are interesting.
There were the imitation traditional hats which seem to be donned more for special occasions. These examples do not really reflect the richness of the hats but give an idea of the different shapes.
Then there are the fur hats and coats. We are off to the Eagle Festival in western Mongolia later this week where I feel we will see plenty of these style of hats. The fur is so soft but unfortunately a lot of this fur is now coming at the expense of the environment. One story which was related to me regarding this was…
A Westerner asked a trapper what he thought about there not being some of these animals around for his children to enjoy if they were over harvested for their furs now. The trapper replied, if I don’t catch these animals my children will not live to see anything. A sobering story.
Mongolia has wonder felt. I love felt. The gers, the round houses, are traditionally made from felt making them weatherproof.
Felt is also used for all sorts of other articles including clothing. The felt clothing here is magical. The coats and blankets are beautiful. The wall hangings true works of art.
Here are some modern, funky examples of felt hats you can buy in the department store.