Creativity in handicrafts
The piled rug
Copy of a rug from round town Pori, LX.
The Friends of Finnish Handicraft, FFH.
The rug is firstly a bed cover. Weaving technique is similar to
oriental carpet. In the Finnish rug there is more weaving in between
the pile rows, there are much less piles and piles are longer. In
Finland the rug has been a nationally popular and admired textile
product in the whole country. Nearly everywhere it belonged to the
dowry of the bride, and has been widely marked in the estate inventory
of the widow after the husband’s death. These beautiful textiles
decorated the house when there were celebrations.
The oldest dated rugs from Finland are from the year 1695 but according
to the researches of U. T. Sirelius, there are notes of the first
rugs in Finnish castles from 1524 and Danish and Swedish scientists
have found even older pieces of piled garments in Denmark.
Decoration dressed on the hips
An apron dressed onto the back. Mordovians.
SU 2396:448. NBA.
Four belts of leather. Gulf of Bothnia. FBdbs.
Sewing bag. Mansi, Siberia. SU 3904:66, NBA
Besides the belts with knives, fishing tools and amulets there
are many other accessories carried round the body. Mordovians wear
a very colorful, narrow apron in the front and an apron also behind.
In many cultures the decoration on the back is sheltering the person
from the bad eye.
Decorative belts with lots of pieces of metal could be collected
little by little as a sign of richness. Many motives used in metalwork
come from Iron Age.
The fascination of the tiny sewing bags often comes from their origin;
in most cultures it was the first handicraft a little girl had to
make for herself. According to the tradition it was decorated with
colorful woolen fabric and was made with beading techniques or with
intarsia like in the picture above.
Creativity in using materials
An over coat of an Udmurt woman. SU 5075:6.
A fur coat of a Selkup woman. Siberia. SU 4899:6, NBA.
The commonly used materials in outside clothing were leather and
fur. By selling products or changing furs, fish and other handmade
goods people got money to bye fabric. The first of these examples
is made of woven material and the other one is a combination of
fur and woolen thin material. If the material was precious it was
used only for decoration or it was added with another material.
The tradition of using fur material, which is always in pieces,
had formed the way to shape garments following the material. The
forms and the decorative look of both these examples are growing
from the same origin of using pieces of material. At the base of
all handicrafts is the learned tradition to make things in a certain
way. The creative and skillful person made own decisions in always
using changing natural materials and this is how, with time, the
tradition slowly grew.