& Permanent Mission of Saint Lucia to the Organization of American States (OAS)
Saint Lucian Traditional Wear
Traditional Madras Wear
The Wobe Dwiyet is the formal national dress. It is believed that the design originated in Southern France. It consists of:
Full-length outer dress with intricate pleats to the waist at the back, and a sash from the back of the bodice,
Long petticoat made of rich lace, satin or lace trimmed cotton,
A scarf called a Foulard worn around the neck and shoulders and attached to the front with a broach,
Custom-made headpiece called Tete Case or La chaudiere, with a peak to the front called “Provocaccion”
The design is said to have originated in Southern France and speaks of our French heritage. It must be noted that there is strong similarity in the national dresses of many English and French-speaking Caribbean countries, and this is an indication of the past French influence in the Caribbean.
The madras is a less formal traditional wear consists of:
A short coloured madras skirt,
A long white cotton petticoat bordered with lace and red ribbons,
White blouse with cotton lace and red ribbons running through its neck and short sleeves tied to a bow,
A red triangular scarf (Foulard) pinned over the left shoulder,
Headpiece called “Tete en l’air” made from madras, tied showing different peaks, each denoting the romantic commitment of the person wearing it:
–1 peak: I am single, my heart is free.
–2 peaks: I am divorced or widowed.
–3 peaks: I am married and not available.
–4 peaks: I am available to all who will try.