SHARE

author image

To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a web
browser that
supports HTML5
video

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).

The Duchess of Sussex wears a traditional Maori cloak called a Korowai during a visit to Te Papaiouru, Ohinemutu, in Rotorua, before a lunch in honour of Harry and Meghan, on day four of the royal couple's tour of New Zealand. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday October 31, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Tour. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

(Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA)

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.

Advertisement

Advertisement

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.

More: Fashion

The feathers-sewn-on-fabric type of Korowai will set you back from several hundred to several thousand dollars, according to the Hemet School of Maori Art.

The real deal – a Korowai woven from muka using the traditional whatu technique – should cost anything upwards of $12,000/£6,152.

And the price reflects the amount of work put into it as it takes at least 4-6 months of weaving constantly for a minimum of 40 hours a week to put it altogether.

The Korowai is a rich part of Maori culture which has great respect for strong women.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex wear traditional Maori cloaks called Korowai during a visit to Te Papaiouru, Ohinemutu, in Rotorua, before a lunch in honour of Harry and Meghan, on day four of the royal couple's tour of New Zealand. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday October 31, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Tour. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

(Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA)

The Duchess of Sussex wears a traditional Maori cloak called a Korowai during a visit to Te Papaiouru, Ohinemutu, in Rotorua, before a lunch in honour of Harry and Meghan, on day four of the royal couple's tour of New Zealand. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday October 31, 2018. See PA story ROYAL Tour. Photo credit should read: Tim Rooke/PA Wire

(Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA)

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.

More: Fashion

Both Meghan and Jacinda got a lot of love for wearing the indigenous inspired garment.

Advertisement

Advertisement

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.

MORE: Every single outfit Meghan Markle has worn during two-week Australian royal tour with Prince Harry

MORE: Everything Meghan Markle is wearing in Australia with Prince Harry – from simple Asos £35 dress to showstopping Oscar De La Renta

MORE: Zara releases maternity line and it looks perfect for Meghan Markle

Advertisement

Advertisement

Original Article