An Afghan boy, along with a US soldier wearing traditional Afghan dress, walk during a fashion show in the run up to Women���s Day at the Bagram Airbase some 50 kms north of Kabul on March 3, 2008. International Women's Day, which is celebrated on March 8 each year, is an occasion marked by women around the world and is also commemorated at the United Nations. AFP PHOTO/Massoud Hossaini (Photo credit should read SHAH MARAI/AFP/Getty Images)

Cotton and wool are the main materials used in Afghanistan. Women wear the Chadri to cover themselves from head to foot, with a latticed slit for the eyes. Young girls go barehead, however women are required to cover their heads with long headscarves. The colour of the headscarf varies according to the groups to which they belong and white headscarf signifies the married status.

Women near Pakistan border wear long, full trousers with a loose long-sleeved tunic dress, similar to kameez, along with a draped headscarf. This is the basis of many of the women’s costumes and the tunic varies in length, design and colour according to the groups they belong to.

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Men wear a thigh-length, long sleeved shirt, belted at the waist. A sleeveless waistcoat is worn over the shirt with loose fitting white trousers. ‘Chupan’ is another form of dress which is long-sleeved and ankle-length. It is made up of wool, often in white colour and worn by people in the mountain in winters. There is also a similar type of coat which is wrapped around the body like a cloak and is made in stripes of darkish colours.

Various forms of headgears including turbans with a long end hanging down back, neat around astrakhan hats, woollen knitted hats, karakul, pakoland large fur sheepskin hats are worn in Afghanistan. Thick woollen, hand-knitted stockings are worn with leather boots during winter season. Sandals or a form of boots are worn by children and adults as protection against the rough mountainous ground or earth. In urban centres, open toe sandals are very common.

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