Around the world, one of the key items common to all folkloric costumes is the shirt. La blouse roumaine, the Romanian blouse, the title of a picture painted Henri Matisse in 1940, is the garment most strongly associated with Romanian folkloric costume. This blouse with the typical straight cut is one of the archetypes of a romanian blouse. The idea was to protect the person wearing the piece against the dark powers which relates to the orginal idea of clothing as a means of protection. Therefore the areas allowing the body to come through were specifically enhanced through additional embrodery which serves the idea of a decorative piece as well. Romanian blouses are delightfully contrary: on the one hand we find “orderly imaginativeness” with a heightened sense for the decorative and glorious; on the other, a rigorous, ordered approach that manifests itself in symmetry and balance. These striking contrasts lend Romanian blouses their appeal to this day.
This Romanian blouse is made of woven, sewed and embroidered by hand. The blouse is out of firm handwoven linen and has a collarless shirt cut. It requires experience to embroider these elaborate patterns completely by hand with fine cross stitch on such a thin fabric. Each blouse part has been individually cleaned with a real hemstitch and then sewn by hand. This makes the blouses extremely long lasting, despite their light fabric. Between 200 and 400 working hours depending on the type and effort of embroidery were necessary to make such a blouse.
III quarter 20. century.
Handwoven linen, not a pure white and embroidery by hand with cotton thread
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