4 Ancient Roman Clothes You Should Know

The Roman architecture was not the only thing that mesmerized me since college days. The ancient Roman clothing was also an interesting subject to read about and it was great fun visualizing about the kinds of clothing worn in ancient Rome. Such is my love for ancient Roman clothing and fashion ideas that I always do have a pair of Roman sandals styled in different ways, which are stashed away inside my shoe rack! The Romans were known to have always used several types of fibers for creating the Roman clothes. This included wool, linen, hemp and certain researches have even revealed that cotton was also used by the Romans. The ancient Roman clothing was well structured and also flowing as well. If the ancient Roman clothing has always fascinated you then you can take a trip back into the days of the ancient Romans by reading about the different types of ancient Roman clothing mentioned below.

Ancient Roman Clothing


The toga was the standard dress for all Romans. This was a long sash like garment, which is about 6 meters in length. The toga was wrapped around the body and was made of wool. This kind of ancient Roman clothing found its base in the formal dress robe that was used by the Etruscans. The classic toga was always worn over a tunic. The early days saw the toga being used for regular purpose but as time passed this ancient Roman garment was used only for ceremonies; perhaps it was considered to be too cumbersome to adorn for the men. Therefore, the toga soon became a representation of Roman citizenship. The toga soon found itself being adorned by the magistrates. Amongst Roman clothes, the toga was also considered to be a symbol of peace. The togas were also seen in many varieties such as the Toga Virilis (plain and white in color), Toga Candida (bright toga) and the Toga Praetexta (white toga with a purple stripe).


The stola was only worn by the women in ancient Rome. The stola was created on similar lines of the toga. The toga was almost like a large blanket wrapped around the body and the stola was rectangular in shape. When draped around the body, it formed as a long garment that reached the ground. The stola also included pleats for the garment and was also worn over a tunic.


The Romans also wore garments that were known as the tunics or the tunica which were around knee length. These were long and resembled the Tee shirts because they were loose and comfortable and also made generally of linen. The unmarried women also wore the tunica but it was styled differently. The stola was draped over the tunica. Women also had to cover their head in the ancient days as per the customs and traditions. Little boys in Rome also wore tunics, which went all the way down to their knees. These were often styled in white color and with a crimson border.


One can see that the Romans also used a variety of cloaks that formed an important part of their attire. Cloaks such as the palla (worn over the tunic or the toga), the panenula (simple cloak), the laena (double coat) and the lacerna (military cloak) were some of the varieties that were used by the Romans.

Colors often dictated the social status of the people in Rome. The Romans were quite particular about their dressing, including accessorizing and even styling their hair. Women in particular loved to wear ornate necklaces, bracelets with the Roman clothing. Men wore a personalized signet ring, as other jewelry forms were considered unsuitable for men. Hairstyles were also elaborate and the use of false hair can be seen since the ancient days. This was done to increase the thickness of the hair. Apart from the ancient Roman clothing, the footwear also denoted the status of the person in the society. One of the typical patterns of the Roman sandals that are used even today is the tie up fashion. In ancient Rome, such a sandal had a leather sole and the lace was used to wind around the legs. The thickness of the sandals always indicated the quality of the shoes. The various strata of society wore various types of Roman sandals.

Thus we can see how the various flowing garments formed a part of the ancient Roman culture. Today, we can still catch glimpses of the ancient Roman clothing in many modern attires and designs.