Scotland's National Dress | Wales' National Dress
England, unlike Wales and Scotland, has no official national dress.
Some people think men in England wear suits and bowler hats, but it is very unusual these days to see anyone wearing a bowler hat.
(The man in the photo was taking part in a birthday parade for one of the Queen's Guard regiments.)
An English National Costume group are trying to make England's national dress be the clothes worn by the Anglo Saxons during the 7th century. The Anglo-Saxons were warrior-farmers and came from north-western Europe. They began to invade Britain during 450 A.D.
A far better choice for an English national dress would be to choose from our many customs and traditions we have in England. There are a wide variety of costumes from the spectacular ceremonies associated with monarchy to the traditional costumes worn by morris dancers and others at English country fairs.
The Pearly Kings were the leaders of the Victorian street sellers. They got their name because they wore 'pearl' buttons on their hats as a sign of authority. Later they began to wear clothes covered all over in buttons.
The title of Pearly King is passsed down in the family, and there are Pearly Queens, Princes and Princesses too. They now spend their free time collecting for charity.
Yeomen of the Guard
Beefeaters and Yeomen of the Guard are very important because they look after our queen and her jewels. Some people say this is the nearest thing to our national costume.
Lots of the ordinary clothes we wear today have a long tradition. The very cold winters in the Crimea in the war of 1853-56 gave us the names of the cardigan and the balaclava. Lord Cardigan led the Light Brigade at the Battle of the Balaclava (1854) A "cardigan" is now a warm woollen short coat with buttons, and a "balaclava" is a woollen hat.
Another British soldier, Wellington, gave his name to a pair of boots. The have a shorter name today - " Wellies "
Other British National Costumes
In Scotland the national dress is a kilt.
The kilt is worn around the waist.
The national costume of Wales is a long skirt, worn with a petticoat and topped with a shawl.
British Culture- Clothes