A challenging task
Studying should always be surprising, inspiring, and tease people to discover new things. This was the case for Elena Lobova,
Step by step
Elena visited an exhibition in the Folklife and Ethnological Museum of Macedonia-Thrace of Thessaloniki, about traditional costumes of the region. «It is mostly wedding dresses donated by people. The period covered goes from mid-19th to mid-20th century», she explains.
She first sketched the traditional dresses, trying to identify recurrent details: «Each piece is composed of several layers of dresses and gowns. I chose to focus on the apron and the deep V neckline».
In the meantime, she was also working on elaborating her own patterns. She took inspiration from the original ones, that
«It was a structured working process» she explains. «At first I created a very simple basic dress, connected with the traditional one but already modern. Then I tried to change the construction of the dress, keeping the general form but changing some details. After this I changed the whole construction – the form of the dress. And finally I did something that we call “inverse”. For example, usually we have a belt on the top of our jeans, but through the “inverse” process it can go everywhere. So I took the aprons and straps of the dress, redesigning them longer, or in different positions, or with different forms».
The final result
«The result is a garment that can be worn every day. Surprisingly, it also has something that reminds of ancient Greece. So I also chose the poses of my models this way. The most difficult part was to combine the patterns, for they are very elaborated and colourful. This is an obstacle also for their realisation in practice. I chose to keep red as the main color, with some black. I used yellow for details, as in the original examples. Grey serves as a link between the other colours».
«Ethnic style is popular now, that’s why we see traditional costumes as very close to our taste. It was interesting to deeply study those traditional dresses. I appreciated and learned from details that are still very modern», concludes Elena. For now she’s not sure she will be able to sew it, but the result is very powerful. Hopefully someone will be interested in realising some of them. Which one is your favourite?