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When I got into making dolls, one thing I wanted to do is to create clothes that reflected real Ethiopian costumes.
I just knew little about sewing clothes, so after I made my first dress I started using and altering already made patterns to learn more about the subject. I’ve gotten better, but one thing I still don’t know much about is traditional Ethiopian dresses.
I haven’t found any book that clearly shows the clothes belonging to the different Ethiopian ethnic groups.
The only book I could get a hold of, Ethiopian Costumes, is only a booklet published by the Ethiopian Tourism Commission many years ago. I think the first print dates to 1980, but I have the version reprinted in 1991.
Ethiopian Costumes
The book has no photos, only drawings, some of them in black and white so it’s not really a good source to research traditional Ethiopian clothes, just a start.
Later, I found out that the web page of the Ethiopian Ministry of Culture and Tourism, reproduces a small version of the same images.
I don’t know if I will be able to reproduce any of the clothes depicted in the book and I really would love to have more information about the subject, but so far I haven’t found any publication that could help me.
Maybe there is a book out there I don’t know about? One only available to scholars studying Ethiopian culture?
It’s really a pity that the richness of the traditional dresses hasn’t been reflected in any book…