On our blog, we have already told you more than once about the variety and richness of the traditional Bulgarian folk costume. Each of the six ethnographic regions of Bulgaria, in addition to its dances, songs and customs, is also distinguished by characteristic folk costumes. In this article, we will take you on an exciting journey back several centuries to tell you more about the beauty of the Northern folk costume and its characteristic features.
What should we know about the Northern Folklore Region?
The type of traditional folk clothing is directly related to the lifestyle, livelihood of the people of the region and their beliefs. Therefore, before paying attention in detail to the Northern folk costume, let us first tell you a little more about the folklore area itself.
The Northern folklore region is one of the largest regions in the Bulgarian ethnic lands, and only the Thrace region is larger than it. It extends over the territory along Stara Planina and covers almost all of Northern Bulgaria, with the exception of Dobruja. The large administrative centers that fall within its limits today are the cities of Montana, Vidin, Vratsa, Pleven, Ruse, Targovishte, Veliko Tarnovo, Gabrovo, Lovech.
Due to its vast territory, Severnyashka region boasts a great folklore wealth, which includes a variety of dances, songs and traditions. Folk costumes are also extremely interesting, as different parts of the region are characterized by a different typemen's and women's northern folk costumes. The differences are largely determined by whether the natives lived in the mountains or in the plains, as well as by seasons and climate. Let us tell you a little more about them.
Women's Northern folk costumes
Characteristic of this part of the Bulgarian lands is the so-called double apron women's costume. It was worn mainly during the warm months in the mountainous regions, and in the plains all year round. As the name clearly suggests, a distinctive feature of this type of costume is the two aprons. This type of costume consists of a white shirt, which in the western part of the district is known as a "shirt". The shirt is completed by two aprons - one that ties in front and a back pleated apron known as a "bruchnik".
In the Northern folklore region, woven women's costumes are also common. They were preferred in the winter, and in the mountainous regions where the climateit is also harsher in the warmer months. This type of costume consists of a thick cloth, most often made of wool and colored black or dark blue. There are also cloths made from other traditional fabrics such as linen or cotton. The sukman has a tunic-like cut and can be either without or with long or short sleeves.
Men's northern national costumes
Bulgarian men's costumes are divided into two main types - black and white. Characteristic of almost the entire Severnyashka ethnographic region is the men's white dress costume. The only exception is the area of the town of Gabrovo, where men wore black costumes.
The men's white shirt costume consists of a white cotton shirt, which can be of different lengths. Poturis are traditionally made of woolen cloth, with the width of the legs varying. According to ethnologists, the narrower legs of the costume were characteristic of the poorer and working population, and wide legs were only worn by the wealthier locals. Men wrap a wide red belt around their waist, and the upper part is a waistcoat, which is often richly decorated.