Dalahorse / Dalahäst

I love the stage when you are starting a new big project, googling for inspiration and reference material. That is one of the benefits of being an illustrator, you learn so much about everything. In Sweden there has been a big hype these last years for a craft painting style called “kurbits”. And I must confess, now it is my turn to fall for it. Must be me getting older…

I found a very good site about the history of Dalahästen and about the men and women who carved and painted (“krusa”) the horses. The men behind this no-fuss site has done a very good job with all the photos and information. It is like opening a treasure box from the past. All photos by Göran Samuelsson, Siv Samuelsson and Johan Nordström, from their site www.dalahorses.info

Blogglänk till sajten Dalahästen en kulturskatt
dalahorse painted by Rytter Olof
Nisser-painted dalahorses from the site www.dalahorse.info

The patterns and the colors used on the traditional dalahorses and old wooden furnitures from Dalarna are so beautiful. Both Andreas and myself have roots in Dalarna and we own three red horses (not much!), but sadly none of them are of any significant age.

My favourite “dalahäst” is not red, but white from around the year 1900. Or even older painted free and personal, before they started to be more of an industry. They are amazing and I hope I will own one some day. When we visit Dalarna this summer it is time to look closer at old dalahorses. (But I have no chance of buying, the ones I want from 1800-1900 will cost several thousand SKr…)

Lena Svalfors Hedin
Hi! My name is Lena and I love creative and beautiful things in life. Sometimes it inspires me to photograph and write something about it, hopefully you can enjoy it too. I have previously been freelancing as an illustrator, now I have a day job focused on communication, web development and graphic design for print and web.
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