Turbans hold great cultural importance in India, the Middle East, Persia, Europe and parts of Africa. They play a significant role in the Sikh and Muslim religions. These cultures and religions largely prefer to wear turbans that are formed from fabric twisted and wrapped around the head as opposed to the stitched styles.
What is a Turban?
‘The turban is essentially a headgear that uses fabric of varying width and length, which is twisted and turned around the head. The wrapped folds derived produce a “fitted effect” akin to a stitched or an engineered head covering. Though length, style, color, and fabric may vary as geographical locations change, the basic concept and construction of the turban remains unaltered. This is probably the widest and most flexible definition of this garment considering the many forms in which it exists.” “Turban .” Encyclopedia of Clothing and Fashion . . Encyclopedia.com. 24 Sep. 2019
Origins of Turbans
Turbans are believed to have originated in Mesopotamia around 2350 BCE where a sculpture depicts a person wearing a turban like headdress. Numerous depictions of turbans, also dated BCE, can be found in parts of Africa and Europe, predating current religions.
Turbans in Europe
Turbans first appeared in the West in the 14th century as the Moors spread their culture and influence across Spain. The moorish style of turbans which left the forehead exposed was adopted by Westerners. It is believe that the name “turban” is derived from turband, tolibant or tulipant – all derived from the word tulip, named so because of the shape of the cloth when wrapped around head.
Turbans in America
During the early 1910s and 20s turbans hit the mainstream. French fashion designer Paul Poiret inspired by Eastern culture and style brought about the turban trend adopted by European aristocracy, hollywood, bohemians and civilians alike. They were often decorated with ornate feathers and brooches.
Turbans in Hollywood & Beyond
From Hollywood Starlets to top trending Influencers turbans have remained the pinnacle of style and the ultimate fashion accessory.