Pictured at top is a man dressed in modern Spanish style.
In Middle is a matador dressed traditionally.
At bottom is the Queen of Spain dressed in the traditional dress of her time.
Dress-Modern and Traditional
In general the Spanish have a very modern outlook on clothing. They are keen on designer clothes but quality is more important than a designer name. Spanish made clothes tend to be high quality and reasonably priced. Teenage girls tend to wear trousers more than skirts. Denim is defiantly `in'. Teenage boys are keen on designer wear and appearance is important to them. Mature Spaniards dress conservatively and with style. Older men in particular tend to wear high quality clothing. It is unclear what the Spanish think of scantily clad holidaymakers but it is not acceptable in small villages away from the coast. One should be particularly careful of dress code if entering churches, swimwear, and short skirts are frowned upon. Style and quality of clothing are important indicators of a person's status and respectability. Men usually dress conservatively, avoiding flashy or bright colors. Women like to be stylish, and children are dressed as nicely as possible. People tend to dress up when going out in public. Colorful regional costumes are sometimes worn for festivities. Western Dress is generally dominant.
Much of spanish traditional dress is very coloful, like the dresses seen in this picture from Andalucía, in southern spain. Many spanish citizens dress in traditional clothing for festivals, and some traditional clothing can be seen today during bullfights, the matadors costume has remained virutally unchanged. The bullfighters cloak, the cape de paseo, worn for his ceremonial entry into the ring, was richly decorated and cutinto a semi circle witha collar, the rest of his costume was made up of a silk or satin jacket and breechs, richly embroidered almost all over in gold or silver thread and the characteristic black cap. Around his waist was wrapped the Faja or long sash, this was a traditional garment as was the sombero.
Spain was a world force in fashion during the sixteenth century; characteristics of traditional Spanish dress were elegance, austerity, rigidity, and superb decoration. Black was dominant for normal wear, gray for special occasions. The fabrics used were rich and heavy, with decorations in gold and silver thread with jewels or pearls. The Moorish occupation of Spain influenced the Spanish traditions of dress, it introduced rich embroideries the use of jewels, jeweled buttons, points and ornaments as well as heavy girdles and collars.
Spain contributed a number of innovations to 16th century costume, for instance the cape, corset and farthingale, which in Spain was a bell shape, high neckline supporting a ruff and the bombasted doublet and trunk hose. The shirt and chemise were white but often decorated with black silk embroidery called Spanish Blackwork, sometimes intertwined with gold or silver thread. This was used at the edges of the elegant wrist ruffle and neck ruffle or collar.
Spain refused to grow fashionably and continued to use these styles well after they were outdated, this was the main cause for Spain to give up it's title as center of European fashion for places like Paris.