What is a Thobe? - newarabia

What is a Thobe?

Posted by Umair Nazaqat on

Middle Eastern countries have recently been observed as one of the best and most attractive destinations in the list of tourism. Thinking about 'What is a thobe?' and buying it beforehand is essential to absorb yourself in the Arabian culture because your trip to any country wouldn't be a vacation well spent if you haven't dressed and lived at least a day like their natives.

The concept of thobe entails a great diversity that varies according to gender differences and among all the middle eastern regions. Typically, men tend to wear monochromatic thobes, while women prefer to wear either sober or heavily embellished thobes of different kinds concerning the type of occasions they attend.

A thobe is also referred to as thawb or tobe, which is a full-length dress providing an elegant and modest coverage to your body, from neck and shoulders to reaching completely up to the ankles. The sleeves are usually designed to be full. However, they can also be stitched in half length, either revealing or veiling up to elbows, in accordance with your preferences.

Evolution of Thobe

The concept of thobe originated from Arabic, which means 'garment' However, the most precise definition of a thobe is worn to cover the body, which is a single garment and not multiple items worn together, excluding the clothes that must be worn underneath. Nowadays, the popularity of thobe has reached worldwide to the extent that many dresses are made with several modifications, keeping in mind its basic design.

What is a Thobe – Regional Impact

Thobe is a loose-fitted, long robe dress that is commonly worn by men in the Arabian Peninsula. It is typically made of cotton and could be see-through, but these are also recently made of polyester, and woolen materials can also be used to stitch such dresses that provide thermal insulation or warmth to your bodies, particularly in colder regions such as Syria. 

Thobes are sewn casually with a round neckline and sleeves without cuffs, but some are stiffened with collars and cuffed sleeves to give a more formal look.

'Dishdashah' is the most common word used for thobe in Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, and The Levant. Arab Maghreb and Northwest Africa, which are collectively known as the Maghreb, and in the United Arab Emirates, the word 'Kandura' is used instead of 'Thawb,' which is a common term among the natives of Saudi Arabia.

The concept of 'What is a thobe?' is entirely opposite when it comes to the citizens of Palestine because it is a traditional dress for women, which is a long tunic – known as thobe or tobe. The diversified colors and patterns with which the thobes are embellished are a glimpse of various aspects of Palestinian culture. Unlike the classical design of thobes, the elegance reflected in the modesty of a Moroccan thobe comes up with an additional benefit, such as right or left-sided pockets.

Thawbs are sometimes coupled with specially designed cloaks which are usually worn on ceremonial occasions such as weddings and also by the officials of certain supreme authorities of the middle east. These cloaks are given a particular name, known as 'Bisht' or 'Mishlah.'

What Should be a Thobe's Color?

There is no particular significance regarding the color scheme of the thobes. The most common color Arab men prefer is white because the duration of summer is extremely extended in mid-eastern regions, and that's why lighter shades are selected, which is one of the best ways to avoid heat absorption. Other than white, more delicate colors that provide a smooth feel to the eyes, such as beige or light brown, are the preferred choices. If you are choosing Moroccan thobes then you must select dark colours, It will provide you modest look in traditional events. 

In contrast, you'll observe the increased trend of dark-colored thobes, such as black, dark blue, or dark brown, made of wool, polyester, and viscose or rayon fabric.


What is a thobe and how it differs has elevated the interests of many people across the globe to know more about Arabic culture. It is an ankle-length robe, also called Jubbah, a term synonymous with thobe, and is worn and admired by the global Muslim community, as they firmly believe that modesty is an ornament equally important for both men and women to display in their dress codes. Get yourself updated and trendy with our modern Men thobes.  


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