Skip to main content
Meaning and Symbolism in Bridal Costumes in Western Saudi Arabia
Clothing and Textiles Research Journal
  • Wijdan A. Tawfiq, Iowa State University
  • Sara B. Marcketti, Iowa State University
Document Type
Publication Version
Accepted Manuscript
Publication Date

The western region of Saudi Arabia has its own unique traditional bridal garments. Little is known about these bridal costumes because they are handmade by a few families in the region. The purpose of this study was to investigate the history, significance, and meaning of the Hijazi bridal costumes. Symbolic interactionism was the theoretical starting point of this study. Qualitative data were collected via in-depth interviews from 22 married Saudi women. A purposive, snowball sampling strategy was used. The data were analyzed using the Miles and Huberman process. Four key themes emerged including (a) physical appearance and process of wearing the costumes, (b) meanings and beliefs related to the costumes’ components, (c) appropriate occasions during which the costumes could be worn, and (d) motivation negotiated within families. The Hijazi bridal costumes have deep historical roots in Saudi culture, which continues to play a significant role in today’s marriage rituals.


This article is published as Tawfiq, W., & Marcketti, S. B. (2017). The meaning and symbolism of bridal costumes in the western region of Saudi Arabia. Clothing and Textiles Research Journal, 35(3), 215-230. DOI:10.1177/0887302X17704718. Posted with permission.

Copyright Owner
Sage Journals
File Format
Citation Information
Wijdan A. Tawfiq and Sara B. Marcketti. "Meaning and Symbolism in Bridal Costumes in Western Saudi Arabia" Clothing and Textiles Research Journal Vol. 35 Iss. 3 (2017) p. 215 - 230
Available at: