Friday, July 23, 2010

Greek Crafts

This summer we traveled to various Greek islands including Crete. We were fortunate to visit a small Folk Crafts museum in Agios Georgios village in Lassithi Plateau. These images reminded me of Russian or even Scandinavian traditional embroidery. The figure of a woman represents life-giving forces of the Earth.
The rug comes from Agios Konstantinos village in Lassithi. The rich imagery includes animals and plants familiar to weavers.

Here is a small collection of various rugs in a local textile shop.

We also stopped at Lasinthos Eco Park in Lassithi, where visitors can see various craft demonstrations.

Cyprus has its own tradition of embroidery and lace making: Lefkara lace. It comes from Lefkara village, and has a very distinct look. We saw these samples in Larnaca airport on our way back home. There are plenty of machine-made imitations, but once you saw the original hand-made lace, there is now substitute. It is amazing!

In one of the villages near Akamas on Cyprus we saw some interesting examples of local weaving. Some of the motifs resemble designs from Northern Russia and even Scandinavia.


The swamp knitter said...

The Greek empire at the time of Alexander the Great was vast. It stretched from Greece to what we know today as Tajikistan in Central Asia. There are still places in Tajikistan where if you look at there local costumes you think you are looking at traditional Greek costumes. The motifs you show are more likely to have travelled north and west along the silk routes out of Central Asia (riverways as well as roadways), ending up in places like Sweden and Russia, not the other way around.

argus said...

Interesting thoughts...however we need archaeological or written evidence to substantiate them.