Let’s dig into Lithuanian culture

People would sing wherever they went. Joys and sorrows  were woven into the songs. Sometimes the heart is breaking, but you have to hold your tears. You start singing and everything seems to go back to normal.

Quote By Marija Petrusyté-Gaidiené.

This reference just merely tells the importance of songs and stories performed by Lithuanian people. They are part of their heritage and identity and it is not possible to separate these people from their songs. As they keep on telling, they learn their songs as naturally as they learn to speak. After all, music is another valuable form of language and expression. The best way for Lithuanian people to perform it is also to wear the perfect clothes, their traditional national costumes. Here is a picture of old ladies singing as a present for Macedonian guests during the party organized by our staff.

What grabbed my attention were their folk costumes displaying a variety of colors, designs, textures and patterns. Here other two pictures: the former shows what was surprisingly hiding into a closet in our office; the latter shows old women dressed up as a sort of ceremony around the fire.

These costumes are usually characterized by aprons (clean white lace aprons in the pictures) embroidered with geometric designs and covering long plaid skirts. Other typical elements are hats trimmed with ribbons that trail down the back and vests. Green and red plaid woolen fabric is typical to the region of Aukštaitija. As a matter of fact, despite some elements in common, folk costumes can be classified into several regional varieties: those from Aukštaitija, Dzukija, Kapsai, Klaipeda region, Zanavykija and Zemaitija. Each variety has its own particular weaving technique, pattern, color, accessory, ornamentation, style of tailoring and way of wearing them. However, there are not only regional differences but also social status variants, with reference to head-dress. Only married women can wear it in order to differentiate themselves from single women. Adult married women like those in the pictures wear a wimple or checked handkerchief.

In the past, these costumes were meant for festive or holiday events. Today national costumes are usually worn by the participants of folk music and dance concerts, religious processions and various public festivities. Maybe one day I will wear it…


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