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Lublin Folk Costume

In traditional folk culture, a festive outfit testified not only to the property of the owner, his marital status, and social position, but above all to belonging to a wider cultural community. It was an expression of regional distinctiveness. Well-known researcher of Lublin folk costumes, prof. Janusz Świeży distinguished in this area 21 varieties of clothes. Homemade fabrics, made of natural raw materials (linen, wool, hemp), made by housewives and village weavers, have been used for a long time to make the costumes. At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, cotton and aniline dyes, fabrics, decorative elements and factory-made accessories appeared in Lublin’s folk costumes. There were also changes in the cut and ornamentation, and a greater influence of bourgeois fashion on folk costumes was observed. It was the period of the greatest heyday of the folk costume, and at the same time the beginning of the slow disappearance of its most archaic forms. In the Lublin region, folk costumes lasted quite a long time and in some areas they were still worn in the interwar period. The eastern, north-eastern and southern regions (Podlasie, Włodawa and Biłgoraj costumes) resisted the city for the longest time. They disappeared faster in economically wealthy areas and located closer to large urban centers (costumes from Krzczonów).

Description of women’s festive attire

The girl wears a wreath decorated with ribbons, a young married woman wears a headdress called a “humełka”, and a mature woman wears a headscarf. She puts on a velvet corset over a white cotton shirt whose collar and cuffs are embroidered with cross-stitch. It is decorated with ribbons, sequins, beads, silver-plated threads and lace. On a wide woolen skirt, decorated with shiny ribbons at the bottom, she ties a short apron called a “zapaską”. Like the skirt, the apron is trimmed with multicolored ribbons and lace. Black festive shoes are laced with a red or green ribbon. The outfit is completed with necklaces made of natural or artificial beads.

Description of men’s festive attire

The Lublin citizen wears a straw hat, adorned with a ribbon, a bunch of flowers and a peacock feather (not shown in this picture). He puts a long white linen shirt over cloth pants and ties it with a velor belt. The belt is decorated with ribbons, sequins, beads and windows, i.e. holes cut in the fabric, under which colorful ribbons are placed. A short satin or velor caftan worn over a shirt is similarly decorated. Trouser legs are tucked into the uppers of high boots with a shoe under the heel.

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