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This material was created with the support and funding of European Union through the Lifelong Learning Programme for Multilateral Comenius projects. The authors of this material take full responsibility of its content. National Agencies and the European Commission are not responsible for the way in which the content of the information will be used.

Short Introductory Statement

FRANCE Traditional dress of Aquitaine

“The idea of this brochure is the result of multicultural experiences with multiple educational features, acquired during the activities within the Comenius project STEP. We hope that, by the end of this project, we will be spiritually richer, good friends and a beautiful and fruitful cooparation will be founded among our schools.” (Mrs. Mariana Arhiri – Head teacher at Saint Mary high school, Galati, Romania) “The purpose of this brochure is to make the students and teachers of the institutions taking part in our project gain a greater understanding of the importance of preserving and respecting national and European values and traditions. Thus the knowledge of these young Europeans will directly filter upwards through family, local and international communities creating a healthier, more tolerant and open-minded generation of Europeans. In such a globalizing world we need to know, respect and preserve both our own traditions and other cultural motives in the EU. These make us learn to respect each other by learning similarities and accepting our differences. Thus we will feel more comfortable, more tolerant, and secure. While working on this brochure, that is writing and learning about folk costumes, students as well as teachers realised their importance to each culture as well as their influence/presence in nowadays fashion, music, dances and even if our modern world changes rapidly, it will always come back to its traditional values.” (Mrs. Sabina - Maria Hâncu – coordinator of the project)

Country shepherds - Landes : Headdress motto tied, laced bodice, black skirt with remarkable frieze and sneakers for women's feet. Knitted and felted beret, long sheepskin, shirt and jacket for men. Countries in the Gironde: the cap Eyelet cadichonne, camisole with square neckline and three quarters sleeves, matching skirt for her. Felt flat bottom, printed velvet waistcoat, shirt and pants pantets white bridge for him.

L'Espadrille Basque It consists exclusively of 3 plants. •

A product Natural 100 %. He(it) was completely spirited away in a generous nature.

The cotton – To weave the cloth.

• The hevea – Its milk enters the composition of the rubber of the sole. • The jute – To braid the sole.

So appears the manufacturer of sandals. He buys the jute forwarded by the port of Bordeaux since the shadowings of the Scotland and the painting heiress of the weavings of Basque linen. By using new materials such as printed paintings or even leather, the rope-soled sandal becomes a fashion accessory and fashion designers are interested in this phenomenon to present their collections.

The Beret Rope-Soled Sandals Legend We tell that at the beginning of XIIth century, the foot soldiers of king of Aragon were put shoes by rope-soled sandals, but this day, nobody can exactly determine the birth of these craft industry. From the 18th century, the rope-soled sandal is made in Bearn and in Pays Basque by craftsmen of the hemp and the linen It is at the beginning of XIXth century in Mauléon, a family the BEGUERIE, dashes in the sale of rope-soled sandals in great quantities and collects packages made at home. Between 1850 and 1880, the manufacturing is going to pass of the craft stage at the preindustrial stage.

Noé would have had some wool freshly cropped at the bottom of the boat, to serve as litter in animals. At the end of 40 days of journey after the Flood, the felted wool would have given rise to the raw material of the beret. The legend does not tell how arrived the headgear. In much safer source, it is the shepherds from Bearn, upward Middle Ages, that "invented" this knitting which felted due to being "beaten" by the bad weather and which protected them at the same time from the sun and from the cold, from the wind and from the rain. It was not even called beret …



If the “béret” remains a national emblem, it is a speciality from Bearn, which we cannot date any more. The “béret” stays so much more from Bearn today than it is not any more made in France than in this region. Today, the caricaturists use the “béret” to represent typical French with the “baguette” and the liter of red. Being a traditional element, it also has this representation in the imaging of the foreign tourists. “Bérets” in the lively colors, the embroidered “bérets” or the simple black “bérets” find their letters patents on the catwalks of the fashion design.

Folklore in Sicily Sicilian folklore, generally, is made up of traditions, songs, dances, costumes and recipes. The birth of folklore in Sicily can’t have a precise date in history, because it was born with the Sicilian people itself, as an indissoluble synthesis of the myths that have become tradition. We can find the authentic Sicilian folklore in the dialectal poems, in the familiar customs, in the songs of celebration, in the religious festivals and public meetings. The knowledge of the authentic Sicilian folklore means the understanding of the deeper spirituality of the Sicilians. The person who visits Sicily "feels" the folklore in everyday life: the decorated floats, the song of the peasants among gardens scented with citrus, in the desserts, in the typical objects such as “Pupi Siciliani” and small drums, but above all at parties. The folklore is experienced in Sicily thanks to folk groups, religious associations that relate our days to the ancient traditions, folk songs, dances, traditional costumes and objects. These groups receive with enthusiasm the other folk groups from all over the world.

Costumes The costumes worn by today's folk groups, are modeled on those of women and carters’ nineteenth century. The woman's dress consists of: brocade skirt, waistcoat

constituted by a sort of earthen vessel used for the wine and water. It is played in whistling inside it. The "Frisacalettu" is an instrument of Hellenic origin. It is made of cane and its sound is similar to the whistle of the shepherd.

Songs and Dances and a shirt, panties, apron and handmade woolen shawl. Both the panties and the apron are handmade Sicilian lace. The women's hair is braided and then gathered into a chignon. The male costume: trousers and a velvet waistcoat, sash, belt red woolen belt, shirt and neckerchief.

Instruments The typical instruments Sicilians are the "Tambourine", the "Friscalettu", the "Marranzano", the "Matracola" and "Bummulo". The "Tambourine" is a percussion instrument consisting of a round skin of a donkey or sheep with the bells at the edges. It is used to set the pace. The "Marranzano" was once a hobby tool and now it has become the symbol of the Sicilian sound. The "Bummulu" is an instrument with a particular sound and it is

The songs were performed mostly at work, during religious festivals or when someone had to court a woman. So the dances were a way to court women, to spend leisure time at the end of long day of work, but also during family celebrations such as weddings and engagement. The most common dance is the "Tarantella".

Tarantella “Tarantella” is a traditional typical dance of all southern Italy. It is famous for its liveliness and joy that it transmits. The phases of the tarantella are different. The most common step is the basic step consisting of alternating small jumps. Other steps are: "On the contrary, backward" and "collective". The side step: you jump with your right foot to the right and left on left foot. Not heel and tip: it jumps continuously with one foot and with the other, always once leaning on the heel and once on the tip.

POLAND Mazowsze Kolbielski national costume for women consists of white linen shirt with characteristic embroidery on collar and cuffs, a red cross lace-up waistcoat.There is a striped cape on the shoulders. The skirt is long in colourful stripes. Bright colours such as red, pink, orange, brown, violet, yellow and green dominate in Kolbelski women’s costume. On head women wear a red or green flowery scarf. The shoes are black, lace-up with high legs, but women prefer walk barefoot when the weather is warm.

Kolbelski national costume for men consists of a white long-sleeved shirt, a red ribbon around the neck, a red or blue waistcoat ,long brown buttoned up in the front jacket with a collar, long red trousers and black leather boots. On head men usually wear a peaked black cap.

Sieradzki clothing In the summertime men wore to work on the fields: hats made out of straw, shirts with ribbon tied under the neck, trousers without shoes. But when the men went to the church, they wore a white linen shirt, a red or orange woollen waistcoat, red or striped wide trousers, a long green jacket and high-heeled black boots, on head they wore navy blue or black cap in the shape of a square. In the winter they wore the same clothes, but changed the colours for blue and navy blue and added red belts.

The women used to wear a white linen shirt, colourful scarves with floral patterns, black or navy blue jackets with handmade ornaments, a woollen skirt and a linen slip. On foot they wore high-heeled lace-up black boots. They also put caps on their heads, wore necklaces made of colorful corals. The red, black, purple and warm green colours dominated in Sieradzki clothing. Nowadays people prefer the red and navy blue colours as they remain the colours of the flowers grown on fields. The red colour they associate with poppy.


The bride is still adorned with massive gold, offered by the family, which will serve as a dowry.

Women´s costumes Bride´s costume, typical of the Minho region

Folk Costume

It is characterized by varnish slippers, embroidered in white and accompanied by a white sock. The skirt is black velvet, embroidered with sequins and beads, approximately with three meters. The apron is made of silk and velvet is also black, embroidered with sequins and beads, and embroidery reveals the shield of Portugal.

Thanks to its bright and beautiful colours, since a long time ago it has remained as the official costume that represents Portugal wherever Folk is displayed.

The blouse is embroidered on the cuffs and shoulders, is accompanied by a black cardigan and a veil on the bride’s head. In the hand the bride holds a wedding bouquet, wrapped in a lover scarf offered by the future husband. This scarf should be used carefully because it will be used to cover the bride’s face on the day of her death.

Girls, ladies and children wear this costume with great pride and satisfaction. In addition to the traditional and colourful scarves featuring the head and shoulders, also make this costume a bright skirt made of wool, completely hand embroidered wool yarn also in colour, with several designs that give grace and beauty in the authenticity of this outfit.

Men´s Costumes


In the field men used to wear an embroidered shirt made of linen, around the waist a band made of black wool, and brown trousers. On their head, they usually wore a hat made of straw.

Filigree is a hand-made ornamental work, usually with gold or silver wires that are welded and molded until the tangled is obtained, and the art work done.

Going to church men used to wear a shirt made of linen, embroidered in red or white, a red band, black trousers, a hat called bragues, white socks and black shoes.

Accesories The capucha The capucha appears covering the heads of the ladies in most of the images from the beginning of Christianity. Its originally homemade, appearing as a typical mantle and can be done with various types of fabrics. There are also some designed especially for Sundays and holidays, made from a kind of very glossy black zaragoza.

This kind of work is more visible in the north of Portugal, in both traditional bride and folkloric outfits.

Lovers scarves The lovers scarves, are made from a thin linen cloth or a cotton handkerchief, embroidered with various drawings later. The girl used to embroider the handkerchief and then hand it to her beloved when he was absent. In these scarves there could be several poems embroidered in addition to some drawings.



In Portugal there are several things made from cork, because it’s a raw material and environmentally friendly. The purses made from cork are really pretty and nice to wear.

Viana bags Viana bags are handmade with regional scarves in several colours, lined with printed fabric and wooden handles. They are original from Viana do Castelo, as the name indicates.

Others accessories Wooden shoes

The Moldavian Folk Wear In the overall context of the Romanian folk wear, the Moldavian costume seems to illustrate most convincingly the principle of unity in diversity, preserving – in forms unaltered by the passage of time – an ethno-cultural unity of a great historical documentary and artistic value, both in the highlands and on the plateau.

The folk wear from VRANCEA The traditional holiday costume in Vrancea County is one of the most gorgeous throughout Moldavia. The existence of the golden thread, with both women’s and men’s, reflects a prosperous economic status and special refinement. The decoration of the women’s blouse catches the eye with its shining gold beads, used for the motif of the cross, as part of the sleeve and chest decoration. Their effect is enhanced

by the orange colour of the dyed cotton yarn used for making the che iţe – that is the loops used to join the pieces of cloth together. The marama with alesături at the end, ennobles the bearing of the women wearing it.

The blouse with twisted sleeves, worn by women of Vrancea County, is a zonal mark and an ethnographic relic attesting to the relationship between the folk and the boyars’ costumes. The specific tayloring of the sleeve – a rectangular triangle with a very sharp point – is highlighted by the spiral embroidery on the fabric. The other decorative elements on the sleeve, altiţa (a group of four decorative registers on the shoulder) and încreţul (the decorative registers coming below the altiţă, sewn with white thread) observe the ornamental style of Moldavian blouses.

The most important piece of the men’s costume is the ample cotton shirt, embroidered with golden thread on the sleeves and the chest. The straight collar is covered by compact

embroidery, also sewn with golden thread. The „tree of life” vegetal motif and the „stars” pattern are frequently embroidered on these shirts.

Influences of the traditional folk wear in nowadays fashion A French designer, Philippe Guilet, has lived in Romania for four years. He has travelled throught the country and has met different people of different ages, jobs and social milieu. He has tried to understand the culture nad history of the country which has welcomed him. Philippe Guilet has learnt to know Romania as he has seen it without preconceived ideas, but with an open mind and creativity. Thus the French artist has discovered that Romania has an amazingly rich culture, that the Romanian artists are full of energy and talent, that the Romanian craftsmen are very skillful, that two apparently different worlds – the one of the talented craftsmen from the Romanian villages and that of the Parisian Haute-Couture – can influence and turn each other into profit.

The designer who had worked in paris with Jean Paul Gaultier, Karl Lagerfeld Ĺ&#x;i Thierry Mugler has left allowed himself to be inspired by Romania, Romanian people and Romanian cultural patterns and traditions.Thus he had the idea of making a collection 100% Couture, 100% modern, 100% Romanian with Romanian artists and craftsmen – named 100% RO. 100%.RO is a project that focuses on Romania and its cultural patrimony, translating in a modern language the Romanian culture, traditions and handicrafts.

The idea of the project is based on the encounter between a foreign artist and the Romanian patrimony in order to make a new artistic creation by reinterpreting the Romanian inspirational sourc es. Almost 50 craftsmen from different regions of the country wove, sewed, span, carved, knitted, embroidered and restyled elements that make up the outfits imagined by Philippe Guilet, following their traditional method, the designer’s indications and sketches.

Blending Tradition and Modernity


Catherine Debusne

La France en costumes traditionnels, Du continent aux tropiques

Elżbieta PiskorzBranekova

"Polskie stroje ludowe"


Costumul românesc de patrimoniu / Patrimony Romanian Costume, Editura SC Alcor Edimpex SRL, Bucureşti, 2007

web sites :

Site du Musée du Béret de Nay Site de L’espassoule à Mauléon



Béatrice Ransinangue Dominique Emombo Xuan Lethi

Ana Raquel Mariana Pinto Margarida Dantas



Accursia Craparo Monteleone Calogero Eleonora Santangelo Leonardo Vaccaro Eleonora Lala

Monica Ene Mariana Arhiri Sabina Maria Hâncu

Poland: Svetlana Zaikina Agnieszka Kobus Buoka Marta Ślażyoska Marta Szczęsna Joanna Nessel Julia Murzynowska Natalia Ossowska Jagoda Figurska Sara Dombrowska Sandra Żyła Daria Dronka Daniel Adamowicz Martyna Agnieszka Sadowska Zuzanna Gnutek Owczarek Inga

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