Meghan Markle was gifted a Korowai but what exactly is it?
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry just wrapped up their 14-day tour of New Zealand and on their last stop to Rotorua, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were gifted a Maori cloak called a Korowai.
Meghan and Harry wore the traditional robes during a powhiri – a welcoming ceremony which involves speeches, dancing, and singing.
The Korowai worn by the royal couple were made by the Ngāti Whakaue tribe elder, Norma Sturley.
Meghans was made to protect her during pregnancy, to envelop her in strength, warmth and aroha (love).
Each Korowai is personalised and the Duke and Duchess were given one with gold and blue representing the couples coat of arms.
Korowai are finely woven cloaks covered with flax tassels. There are many different types of Korowai that are named depending on the type of tassel used as the decoration. Some cloaks have unraveling tassels, others undyed, or in the style of pompoms.
The first image of a Korowai dates back to 1844, when George French Angas painted historical accounts of early New Zealand.
Nowadays, if you wanted to own one, youd have to have it especially made and that will require a lot of time and money.
The Korowai is a rich part of Maori culture which has great respect for strong women.
New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern also donned the traditional attire when she visited Buckingham palace earlier in the year.
Like Meghan, she was also pregnant when she wore the Korowai to meet the queen.
Both Meghan and Jacinda got a lot of love for wearing the indigenous inspired garment.
Aww I love this! Meghan looks so elegant and regal in the Korowai and I love that shes wearing a pounamu necklace too. I am just loving this tour, wrote one Twitter user.
Writing about Jacinda, another user wrote: Got a tad emotional seeing the prime ministers outfit. I think its the symbolism of the korowai. Its like a blanket providing warmth and comfort for her and her baby. That connection to the land. So special.
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