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In August 1927 Iranian men were required by law to replace their Iranian-style hats and turbans with a new hat, designed based on the French military kepi, called Pahlavi.

Two years later in March 1929 (1308) the Iranian People were banned from wearing their ethnic costumes. This time they were required to wear Western-style suit in combination with Pahlavi hat. Six years later, in June 1935 the Iranian parliament passed another law that replaced Pahlavi hat with chapeaux and replaced various types of Iranian footwear with European-style leather shoes. The only people exempted from this law were the clergy, defined for the first time in Iranian history as a new category called the “sprituals” (Rowhaniyat). To keep their attire on the clergy needed to receive a government permit.
All laws regulating people’s attire were repealed after the removal of Reza Shah from power by the Allies in 1940.

* Family photos from Kharkhasak weblog. Photographs of documents from “Kleidungspolitik in Iran” by Bianca Devos, 2006.
Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1929.

Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1929.

Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1936.

Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1936.

Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1936.

Permit to wear clergy clothing, 1936.

Copy of an application by Muhammad Bagher Yazdaie, an exporter of traditional cloaks

Copy of an application by Muhammad Bagher Yazdaie, an exporter of traditional cloaks, 1930.

A note from the prime minister attached to a letter of supplication from Isfahan’s traditional cloak-makers

A note from the prime minister attached to a letter of supplication from Isfahan’s traditional cloak-makers requesting the king’s permission to make cloaks during the winter. Dated 14th of Azar 1309 (5 December 1930).

A letter of supplication from Isfahan’s traditional cloak-makers

A letter of supplication from Isfahan’s traditional cloak-makers requesting the king’s permission to make cloaks during the winter. Dated 14th of Azar 1309 (5 December 1930).

Advertisements for new hats (late 1930s)

Advertisements for new hats (late 1930s)

Pahlavi hat and dress code in an elementary school.

Pahlavi hat and dress code in an elementary school.

Pahlavi hat, new dress code, and "Giveh" (traditional footwear), probably 1927.

Pahlavi hat, new dress code, and “Giveh” (traditional footwear), probably 1927.

Western-style dress code in a family photograph, late 1938.

Western-style dress code in a family photograph, late 1938.

✤ Also available in: Persian

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