Costumes of Monba Ethnic Group

Clothes made of woolen fabric “Pulu”

Moinbas have very close relationship with Tibetans. Its living habits are considerably influenced by Tibetans, but it also has its own characters. Clothes of the Moinba are mainly made of Pulu. Pulu is a kind of woolen fabric, which is used by Tibetans to make clothes and cushions. It has different types with bright and beautiful colors and is a necessary thing for the Moinbas’ daily life. 

Men in Menyu region like to wear a kind of hat called “Balaga”. The top of the hat is blue or dark Pulu, the lower part is red Pulu, and the brim of the hat is edged with orange cotton flannel with a breach on it, which is directed at the top of the right eye when wearing. Orange pigment is got from roots of a kind of grass in the local region. These colors are very bright and are very striking to the eye from far away. Men in Menyu generally wear reddish brown cloth or Pulu robe, which is a bit shorter than Tibetans’ robes. Because slopes are big and paths are steep, people like to wear high boots with soft sole, which is arranged and sewed with red and black Pulu. Man in Motuo seldom wear hat, and they often wear bamboo hat weaved by their own hands to protect themselves from sunshine and rainfall. They usually wear white robe, weaved with cotton or flax, with bare feet. They also hang chopper or leaf-shaped knife on the waist.

Women in Menyu also wear robe, and cover a white Pulu robe out of it. Women in Lebu, Bangjin are accustomed to having a sheep fur or fur of calf on the back. It is said that Princess Wencheng of the Tang Dynasty left this custom when she came to Shannan, which was for the purpose of avoiding evil spirits and seeking good luck. Actually it is used to protect clothes from being worn out when carrying basket and it can also be used as raincoat. Adornments made of turquoise; red coral and agate are hung around women’s neck. The underwear of the women is called “Bubure”. There are different colors for it and it has no open front, no collar and no button. There is only a round opening for putting on from head. The outer clothing is called “Donggu”, and it has two kinds: short and long, which is made of red and black Pulu. Some people have a metal protective Buddhist box on the breast with an image of Buddha and Buddhist classics, which is called “Gewu”. No matter men or women, all put on a red Pulu belt, which is 2 meters long and 0.6 meters wide.

Climate in Motuo region is warm, so women like to wear white thin small coat or gown without sleeves and collar, and colorful skirt. With necklaces and earrings, they are quite elegant and charming.