How To Say ‘Clothes’ In Korean

A black shirt on a hanger hung on the wall

The clothes we wear can define who we are. So today let’s learn how to say ‘clothes’ in Korean. You’ll also learn how to say some clothing items in Korean, example uses, and fun associations!

A black shirt on a hanger hung on the wall


The 80/20* of How to Say ‘Clothes’ in Korean

Vocabulary:

clothes (ot)

의복 – clothes (uibok) (used in official cases)

옷차림 – clothing style (otcharim)

 

How to remember (association):

My favorite piece of clothing is my coat. ( / clothes)

*80/20 Pareto Principle – The 20% you should learn that will give you 80% of the results.

 

Can't read Korean yet? Click here to learn for free in about 90 minutes!

 

‘Clothes’ in Korean

The main word for how to say clothes in Korean is 옷 (ot). Whether you are talking about just one piece of clothing item, or many, the word remains the same. However, if you want to emphasize the fact you are speaking of clothes as multiple, you may add the particle 들 (deul) after 옷, creating the word 옷들. 들 is simply an expression that there are multiple of the noun it is attached to.

Another word for clothes in Korean is 의복 (uibok). This word is different from 옷 in that it is used for more official purposes.

Additionally, there is the word 옷차림 (otcharim). This is a good word to use when you want to describe your, or someone else’s, style.

To remember 옷 in English there are two approaches you can take. You can make an association for the sound or the image. Or even both if that’s easier for you.

For remembering it by sound, what words can you think of in English that sound like 옷 (ot)? How about if you add the “c” sound to the beginning? It sounds like coat a very common piece of clothing!


Association:

My favorite piece of clothing is my coat. ( / clothes)


You can also use the image of the hangeul for 옷. It almost looks like a little person, imagine the person is putting on their clothes because they ought to go out.

What association works best for you? Do you have effective ways to remember other words in Korean? Let us know in the comments below!

 

코트 (koteu) = coat

재킷 (jaekit) = jacket

셔츠 (syeocheu) = shirt

티셔츠 (tisyeocheu) = t-shirt

드레스 (deureseu) = dress

원피스 (wonpiseu) = dress

바지 (baji) = pants

반바지 (banbaji) = shorts

치마 (chima) = skirt

 

A word of caution about Romanization

While it is possible for you to study the words in this article simply by reading their romanized versions, it will come in handy for you to be able to read Hangeul if you ever wish to come to Korea. Hangeul is the Korean alphabet, and not difficult to learn. In fact, you can learn it in just 90 minutes.

After you’ve familiarized yourself with Hangeul, life in Korea will suddenly seem so much easier and the country won’t appear so foreign for you. So, if you’re serious about learning Korean, why not learn Hangeul today?

 

Sample Sentences

Boys Department In Clothing Store

Formal:

한달에 보통 의복을 위해서 돈을 얼마나 소비하세요? (handare botong uibogeul wihaeseo doneul eolmana sobihaseyo? )

How much money do you usually spend on clothes each month?

Standard:

그 파티에는 어떤 옷을 입을거에요? (geu patieneun eotteon oseul ibeulgeoeyo?)

What kind of clothes will you wear to that party?

압구정에 가면 좋은 의복을 입은 사람들 많이 볼 수 있어요. (apgujeonge gamyeon joeun uibogeul ibeun saramdeul mani bol su isseoyo)

If you go to Apgujeong, you can see many well dressed people.

Informal:

난 우리 발리 여행 위해 새로운 옷을 많이 샀어. (nan uri balli yeohaeng wihae saeroun oseul mani sasseo.)

I bought many new clothes for our Bali trip.

미안한데, 벌써 옷을 벗어서 오늘 다시 밖으로 못 갈 것 같아. (mianhande, beolsseo oseul beoseoseo oneul dasi bakkeuro mot gal geot gata.)

I’m sorry, but I don’t think I can go out again today since I already took off my clothes.

Want more Korean phrases? Click here for a complete list!

Photo Credit: BigStockPhoto

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