Traditional clothes of Nagaland

The traditional costumes worn in Nagaland are quite different from other states of India. Residents of the state give a lot of weightage to their culture, traditions and attire and feel that attire is what defines them and separates them from the rest of the crowd. 

The clothes that people wear here are colorful and vibrant. Shawls are an important item that people in Nagaland adorn themselves with. Sundar Shalat is one of the most popular traditional dresses.

 These shawls are designed separately for each tribe to differentiate them easily. These categories are further divided into categories and sub-categories and narrow down the design for each of them. Shawls also differ depending on the person’s role. 

For example, if a person has done any work of merit, he will have a different shawl than a common man living in a village. < Classification of Nagaland traditional costumes on tribal basis:

Traditional clothing in Nagaland is quite different from other states of India. Residents of the state value their culture, traditions and attire very much and feel that attire is what identifies them and separates them from the rest of the crowd. The traditional costumes of Nagaland are colorful and vibrant.

A major component of the culture of Nagaland is the traditional clothing of Nagaland. In the modern world, the people of Nagaland still preserve their traditional clothing heritage. Below is an overview of Nagaland’s traditional costumes worn by men and women, Nagaland’s bridal and bridal wear, its culture and festivals.  

Keep reading if you want to know more about the cultural and traditional heritage of Nagaland. Enjoy this cultural ride of Nagaland through this blog.

Angami tribe

This pattern is common to all Angami costumes with red and yellow stripes on top of a black cloth called Lohe. The Angami villages in the western part, however, have a distinct and different pattern.


Lothas have a distinct distinction of shawls based on the number of genas performed by the shawl wearer. Thereby, a person who has undergone the first gena wears a shawl known as a phangrup, the stripes of which widen after the second gena.

 After undergoing the third generation, the male can wear Ethasu. After this, if the series of feasts must be completed, and the stoning ends, the man is responsible for wearing the lungpensu. Lungpensu is a dark blue cloth with five light blue stripes with narrow stripes on both sides.


This is an Ao warrior shawl with various motifs including tiger, Gemini, elephant, rooster, human head and a spear above it. The shawl is beautiful and attractive.

 The figures on the top of the shawl represent certain symbols such as Gemini signifying the wearer’s wealth, elephants and tigers signifying the person’s ability to hunt, and human heads symbolizing the wearer’s success.

number of heads. Patterns are black and above a white stripe. The cloth on which the patterns are made is dark blue.

Changs (shawl)

Kaksi Ni  is a dress worn by unmarried boys as well as girls. Newly married couple 

They add silang nei  . 

A different type of Tobu Nei Chang Shawl has a red and black zig-zag pattern on a blue stripe. Yimchungar shawl is another variety of shawl that is really popular and that is Anak Khim which is black and Mokhok Khim which is white. 

Another shawl called Rongkhim which is a type of Yimchungar shawl worn by a person killed and taken on the head during battle. The shawl has a red design which is rectangular in shape, the red color represents the blood of the enemy. 

Earlier, by a glance at the shawl of its wearer, one could identify his tribe, social status, village of residence and the number of ganas he performed. However, that is not really possible in today’s scenario.


Apart from the shawl, the kilt is another commonly worn garment. A kilt is characterized as a working dress which is usually black. It is intricately designed with cowrie which makes it look like a men’s wear. Before designing the gourds on the kadai, they are rubbed on a stone to make them adhere well to the cloth. 

A man who wears a kilt sews it. No one else including wife or any other person is allowed to do this for him. Cows designed above the kilt are very popular among Nagas and symbolize the wearer’s success in love as well as in war.

Women wear dresses a quarter of a meter long and tightly wrapped around the waist. Shirts are also available in many varieties and are worn according to the clan of the woman. Skirts with red and yellow stripes are worn on special occasions and they 

 Still known as  Janganap Su . Angami  women wear a skirt made of blue cloth and white cloth. The margins of the white cloth have thick black stripes that vary in width. They also wear mechlas which can be wrapped around skirts and worn with shawls.

 On the other hand, men wear the same style of clothing with jewelry, bangles, pendants; Bracelets etc. which give a purely religious look. Nagaland women also wear another dress called Nekhro which is designed like a petticoat. The uniqueness lies in the color and pattern of these dresses. Another costume worn by the men of Nagaland is the rikho.

 Men who have not yet been able to throw a big feast or kill/defeat any major enemies wear this attire. This cloth is white in color with four black stripes attached to it. Moyer Tusk  is a cloth that is common and dark blue in color. It has a band with a zigzag pattern at the end of the cloth.

 Alungstu  is also a traditional dress of Nagaland worn by the rich people of the place. These dresses represent prosperity and success. The cloth is dyed yellow and has flowers on it. These dress designs are made only by tribal people.

So to say it all, one must definitely visit this place and experience its wonderful culture and traditions. Dress clearly identifies the people of a place and the residents of that place certainly believe and live by it.

Jewels of Nagaland

Naga jewelery is made from various materials like carnelian and glass beads, coral, bronze, pig tusks, shells, ivory, conch, cowhide. Orange, red, yellow, blue, green, bronze- colors combined on one piece.

Most necklaces are multi-stranded and it is quite natural to wear multiple necklaces at once.

Culture of Nagaland

Nagaland has an ancient history of tribes which number as many as 66 with sub-tribes. Of these, 16 are considered major tribes. Despite the difference in language, all the tribes share the same leafy dress code, food habits and traditional laws. Nagas are mostly Christians. Because of the joie de vivre nature of Nagas, dance and music are an integral part of their culture.

Nagaland is exquisitely rich in flora and fauna and the place does not leave behind the beautiful birds that it is home to, housing some of the most beautiful flora and fauna. Nagaland is called the Falcon Capital of the World because of its bird diversity. Nagaland supports a vibrant tribal culture that amazes and amazes anyone who visits the place.

Traditional clothes of Nagaland

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