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Kaftans worn by the Ottoman sultans today form an extraordinary collection in Topkapi Palace . Some of them were so precious that they were given as a reward to high dignitaries and victorious generals during select religious festivals.
Caftans were often embroidered on the front and sleeves. As part of the general clothing regulations in the Ottoman Empire , there was a strict hierarchy of colors, patterns, ribbons and buttons according to the rank of person wearing the kaftan.
While large patterns and subtle colors were used in the 14th century, they became smaller and stronger in the next century. In the second half of the 17th century, kaftans made of fabrics with yollu - vertical stripes with various embroideries and small patterns - were the most valuable, the so-called "Selimiye" fabrics.
Most fabrics were made in Istanbul and Bursa , but some also came from Venice , Genoa , Persia , India and even China . Each fabric had very special properties and was named accordingly: velvet , felt (aba) , ribbed raw silk (buccaneer) , satin (canfes) , velor (gatma) , moiré (gezi) , brocade (diba) , silk (kemha)and many others. The colors most frequently used were China Blue , Turkey red , violet, Pismis ayva (boiled quince) and saffron yellow finish