Beijing National Costume Museum is the first professional costume museum in China. There are more than 10,000 collections of national clothes, decorations and textiles. Moreover, the museum has nearly 1,000 rare pictures recording the Yi, Tibetan and Qiang nationalities’ lives in the 1930s. Tourists can visit this museum free of charge.
Beijing National Costume Museum has seven exhibition halls including a metalworking jewelry hall, an ethnic minorities’ costume hall, a textiles and embroidery hall, an old photos hall, a Miao nationality costume hall, a Han nationality costume hall and the Olympic costume hall. The museum mainly displays China’s ethnic minorities’ traditional costumes and their colorful cultures. Exhibitions range from beautiful national silver jewelry, traditional textiles and embroidery to fantastic Miao nationality costumes.
Many of China's ethnic minorities have the habit of wearing silver. In traditional concepts, wearing silver can bring good luck. In the modern concept, silver decorations stand for wealth and beauty. Owing to the geographical barrier, different ethnic minorities wear different silver ornaments. Besides, the process of making silver ornaments is quite complex, so the silver ornaments are extraordinarily precious.
Northern and southern costumes have obvious distinctions. The costume of northern minorities in China is a long dress. The fabric is mainly fur and brocade. However, in the south, coats and skirts are the main garments. Most are made from cotton and linen. The numerous types of garment and variety of decorations of China’s ethnic minorities are beyond description.
The Miao nationality has over 100 branches, therefore it has more than 100 types of costumes. From Shidong Miao’s gorgeous clothing to the original south Dan Miao’s costumes, every type of costume has its own unique design. The most beautiful Miao clothing is in Guizhou. Embroidery, wax printing, textiles and silver are all extremely outstanding, which fully reflects the characteristics of the Miao nationality’s art of clothing.
You can't miss the beautiful Miao silver during the visit: the luxuriant Shidong Miao silver embroidery, Hezhen fish skin and Chahar princess headdress.
Location: 2 Beikou Cherry Blossom Road, Peace Street, Chaoyang Strict, Beijing (北京市朝阳区和平街北口樱花路2号)
Transportation: Take bus 13, 62, 117, 119, 361, 367, 379, 416, 419, 422, 606, 713, 725, 730, 807 or 847 and get off at Beikou Peace Street (和平街北口) or east of Cherry Blossom Street (樱花东街) or Zhongri Hospital (中日医院)
Opening times: 8:30am-11:30pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30pm-16:00pm on Saturdays. The museum is closed during the summer and winter holidays and on every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.