Dr. Reem Tariq El Mutwalli spotted this tunic dress (gallabiyah) at an antique dealer and acquired it for The Zay collection. It is a contemporary example of (talli) in metallic tinsel sold for tourists.
This Egyptian tunic dress (gallabiyah) is a modern example of the wedding (gallabiyah). It is made of black synthetic net-fabric (tur_bi_talli) and embellished with silver metallic tinsel (khus) or (talli). The wedding gallabiyah is a full cut, long sleeved robe, worn over a colourful underdress. The hue of the underdress would show from below.
The tunic dress (gallabiyah) is slim fitting and simplified on the front, back, and sleeves. The overall simple shape is derived by plainly folding a length of the fabric and cutting an opening at the centre of the fold to allow the head to pass through, creating the central panel of the tunic to which two fitted long sleeves are attached. The round fitted neckline ends with a small V-shaped (sab‘ah) opening. While two side slits close to the lower hemline allow for ease of movement.
The essential motif for a (tur_bi_talli) wedding gallabiyah is the amulet (hijab), the large diamond motif on the centre front of the garment. In some dresses, the neckline is cut quite high, and the hijab appears over the heart. The hijab consists of two trapezoid shapes made of a smaller floral motif, and the remaining area is covered with smaller lozenges. Lines of stitches (darz) reach down from the neckline, mimicking the form of a necklace supporting a stylized amulet. The sleeves are hemmed with a pyramid motif, known as (ahjibah), that is also used around the bottom hemline with a small cross motif. The remaining area is embellished with a big floral motif and a small lozenge motif.