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Bridal robe (hwalot)
활옷 (여성 결혼 예복)
Date: 2001
Object Name: Costume
Materials: Silk with silk and gold embroidery
Dimensions: H. 51 in x W. 83 in, H. 129.5 cm x W. 210. 8 cm
Credit Line: Acquisition made possible by Mrs. Ann Witter
Department: Korean Art
Collection: Textiles
Object Number: 2002.6
On Display: Yes
Location: Gallery 23

Description

Label: Hwarot were originally part of a princess’s “grand ceremonial attire,” but in the late Joseon dynasty (1392–1910), women of all classes were allowed to wear them as bridal robes on the day of their wedding ceremonies. This particular robe is a contemporary reproduction based on a hwarot worn by Princess Bok’on (1818–1832). The robe was crafted by Han Sang-soo, who is a holder of Important Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 80 in embroidery. (South Korea bestows these honors on traditional artisanal practices such as music, dance, and crafts; their holders are known as National Living Treasures.) The embroidery faithfully follows the traditional court style throughout, but is also infused with Han’s creativity, including the application of numerous gold medallions with a pair of ducks on the front of the robe. Exquisitely embroidered tiny motifs, such as auspicious flowers, fruits, butterflies, and animals, reflect collective wishes for the new couple’s conjugal happiness, fertility, wealth, and long life.
Label: Hwarot were originally part of a princess’s “grand ceremonial attire,” but in the late Joseon dynasty (1392–1910), women of all classes were allowed to wear them as bridal robes on the day of their wedding ceremonies. This particular robe is a contemporary reproduction based on a hwarot worn by Princess Bok’on (1818–1832). The robe was crafted by Han Sang-soo, who is a holder of Important Intangible Cultural Heritage No. 80 in embroidery. (South Korea bestows these honors on traditional artisanal practices such as music, dance, and crafts; their holders are known as National Living Treasures.) The embroidery faithfully follows the traditional court style throughout, but is also infused with Han’s creativity, including the application of numerous gold medallions with a pair of ducks on the front of the robe. Exquisitely embroidered tiny motifs, such as auspicious flowers, fruits, butterflies, and animals, reflect collective wishes for the new couple’s conjugal happiness, fertility, wealth, and long life.