How many different types of fabric are there in a folk costume? Some fabrics are visible, others are hidden on the reverse side of a jacket, a skirt, etc. In this blog post I write about the eight different fabrics I have woven for a particular folk costume of the region of Asker in southern Norway. If you wonder how the costume looks like, take a look at their home page.
The skirt of the fold costume is a two shaft in black and blue with green and yellow stripes.
In old times clothes were worn for many years and a skirt was a precious garment. Therefore a small stripe of fabric was attached to the bottom of the skirt, when this stripe was worn out, it was replaced with a new one without needing to replace the skirt itself. The fabric stripe is handwoven, two shaft, and it has a bright red color.
There are three different waistcoats to this particular folk costume. The fabric below is a damask, and weaving it is very time consuming, being made on a drawloom. It is a gorgeous fabric available in green or pink.
I have also woven the winter waistcoat for women, it is made in either green or red and is a simple twill. I have previously written a blog post about it, you can find it here.
This is the men’s waistcoat. The fabric is similar to the skirt fabric, but heavier.
And then there is the apron! It is either red or green, with a typical stripe pattern. This is woven on eight shafts.
And now the more anonymous fabrics. For instance the lining of the cape, a light and warm textile. This is a two shaft woven in coarse wool from the old Norwegian landrace. It is sent to the museum factory of Sjølingstad for brushing and softening.
Here comes my favourite, the lining of the men’s waistcoat. It is a simple and very beautiful twill with cotton warp and single unbleached linen as weft.
I know several weavers weaving for the guild, who ownes and sells this folk costume. We can discuss problems with the weaving and give each other advice.
I send away large, heavy rolls of finished fabric. At the guild, people attend courses learning to sew their own costume or to sew a cosume for a relative. And the guild’s professional tailors sew costumes on request.