Folklore and folk costume/folkdräkt

These days I am getting a lot of inspiration from swedish folklore and especially folk costumes. For example the many different types of “daldräkt” in bright colours and lots of lovely flower embroidery, made with amazing craft skill and big attention to every details. Growing up in Stockholm this has never been a real part of my life, but I am very attracted to it. In another life I would have chosen the textile path instead of illustration…

Just discovered this almost overwhelming blog and book by Laila Durán, “Folklore Fashion“. She has an ongoing project photographing folklore costumes in Scandinavia, and printing beautiful books about it. The first book about “skandinavisk folkdräkt” looks like this and can be ordered here.

Skandinavisk folklore och folkdräkt

I haven´t seen the books yet, but I will. The photos looks almost strange to modern eyes. It is too much colour, too much decorations, too much exotica… But it is only hundred years ago since these costumes were used as a every day clothing in Sweden and Norway. And they are photographed in the typical environment of the time in a very nice way.

Boksida om folkdräkt i Orsa

Today “folkdräkt” are only used by few people at special occasions. For example, at our wedding, some years ago, the sister of my mother in law was dressed in a “daladräkt” (a folk costume from Dalarna) and was so beautiful.

Laila Duráns blogg om folkdräkt och folklore

When it comes to folk costumes/folkdräkt there is always a debate about whether they should be “exactly” as they “always” have been or if you are free to change them. I think it is good there is lots of research and documentation about the traditional way of clothing. But for myself I am more interested in a modern free use of it as an inspiration to create new beautiful things…

Vallkulla med folkdräkt i Dalarna

All photos by Laila Durán, Duran Publishing.

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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