What Was Fashion Like in Ancient Greece?

The ancient Greeks were known for their remarkable contributions to art, philosophy, and literature. But they also had a distinct sense of fashion that reflected their society’s values and beliefs. In this article, we will explore what fashion was like in ancient Greece and how it evolved over time.

Ancient Greek Clothing

Ancient Greek clothing was simple yet elegant, with a focus on draping and flowing fabrics. The most common garment worn by both men and women was the chiton, a rectangular piece of cloth that was wrapped around the body.

Women’s Clothing:

Women typically wore two types of chitons – the peplos and the himation. The peplos was a long, sleeveless garment that was fastened at the shoulders with pins or brooches. It was often made from lightweight fabrics like linen and draped in such a way that it accentuated the natural curves of a woman’s body.

On top of the peplos, women would wear a himation, which served as an outer garment or shawl. The himation could be worn in different ways – draped over both shoulders or wrapped around the body like a cloak.

Men’s Clothing:

Men also wore chitons but in slightly different styles than women. They would typically wear a shorter version of the peplos called a chitoniskos or a more fitted version called a chiton proper. Men often left one shoulder bare or covered it with an additional himation.

Fashion Accessories

Fashion accessories played an essential role in completing an ancient Greek outfit.


  • Ancient Greeks loved to adorn themselves with jewelry made from precious metals like gold and silver.
  • They wore earrings, necklaces, bracelets, and rings.
  • Popular motifs included animals, flowers, and mythological figures.


  • Ancient Greeks commonly wore sandals made from leather or woven materials like papyrus or reeds.
  • Sandals were often decorated with intricate designs and could be simple or more elaborate depending on the occasion.

The Evolution of Fashion in Ancient Greece

Fashion in ancient Greece underwent significant changes over time. Here are a few notable periods:

Minoan Civilization (c. 2700 BCE – c.1450 BCE)

The Minoans, an ancient civilization that flourished on the island of Crete, were known for their vibrant clothing styles and intricate jewelry. Women wore brightly colored skirts with fitted bodices, while men wore loincloths or kilts.

Archaic Period (c. 800 BCE – c.500 BCE)

The Archaic period saw the rise of the peplos as the dominant garment for women. It was often adorned with various patterns and held at the waist with a belt or girdle. Men continued to wear chitons but with fewer embellishments.

Classical Period (c.500 BCE – c.323 BCE)

The Classical period marked a shift towards simpler and more practical clothing styles. The peplos remained popular among women but became less elaborate. Men’s clothing also became less decorative, focusing on clean lines and well-draped fabrics.

Hellenistic Period (c.323 BCE – c.30 BCE)

The Hellenistic period brought a fusion of Greek and Eastern influences. Clothing became more extravagant, with the introduction of new fabrics like silk and the use of vibrant dyes. Women’s garments had more pleats and folds, while men began to wear longer tunics.

In conclusion, fashion in ancient Greece was characterized by simplicity, elegance, and a focus on draping. The clothing styles evolved over time, reflecting changes in society and cultural influences. Ancient Greeks valued beauty and aesthetics, which was evident in their fashion choices and accessories.