It is assumed that the carrying of a dressing gown within the western world has its routes in the mid seventeenth Century, it was originally solely worn by men and it absolutely was referred to as the ‘banyan’. The term ‘banyan’ encompassed several totally different designs of robes that were well-liked amongst men between the mid 17th to the first 19th Century.
Europeans began to adopt dress style and influences from alternative cultures in the early seventeenth Century and the banyan is that the earliest example of this. It is thought that men adopted the ‘banyan’ style from Persian and Asian inspired clothing (Banyan in Portuguese, Arabic and Gujarati all which means ‘merchant’).
At the time of the mid 17th century a widespread penchant for the exotic and oriental had become a mainstream fascination in Europe. This coincided, and might be attributed to, strengthened trade routes with the East. The Chinoiserie style emerged as a fashionable fashion. This French term meaning “Chinese-esque” has since become a recurring theme in European creative styles. Chinoiserie reflects Chinese creative influences. This penchant for the exotic and oriental was a leading influence on the success of the ‘banyan’, this name being predecessor to the ‘dressing robe’.
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