What do symbols on Belarusian embroidery say?

What do symbols on Belarusian embroidery say?

The collective of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House is one of the winners of the prize "For Spiritual Revival". These masters recreate the patterns of rushniks (embroidered towel) which appeared two centuries ago.

It is a special thing not only for Belarusian villages. Rushniks were used for weddings, decorating icons, blessing children - it is an art, a master makes one rushnik for about three months. Everything's hand-made. The symbols on the embroidery always have different meanings.

Our great-grandmothers embroidered white woven cloths of shirts with red and black threads. They told the story of life of someone who will wear it, putting the sacred meaning in every stitch.

Natalya Molokovich, master of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House:
This is a shirt from village Volosovichi, we are renewing it. We’ve copied the pattern: it will be a sleeve. The shirt is embroidered with details first, then assembled and sewed.

From region to region, from village to village, patterns varied in shapes and colors. The masters from the Oktyabrsky Crafts House set an ambitious goal 20 years ago. To stretch a thin thread of communication between different generations of one land through two centuries.

Tamara Stanislavchik, master of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House:
We go to the expedition first, looking for grandmothers who could tell us something, show something. Then we come here, fix everything.

Tatiana Kholodok, director of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House:
To renew the suit that we asked a grandmother.

People even bring their heritage to them at exhibitions asking to breathe new life.

Flowers and leaves that come to life on a fabric have their significance. There are no random points either on the cloth canvas, or in life.

Natalia Molokovich:
If pigeons meet each other, it means that love is in bloom, wedding would be soon. The birds that go in different directions mean loss or departure. During the war, people embroidered such birds when they lost someone.

According to the masters, fashion for everything Belarusian awoke in Belarusians interest in traditions. The desire of young people to tie the knot in national costumes is no longer surprising. The masters are ready to help create a unique thing with a very personal story.

Tamara Stanislavchik:
We made costumes for a young couple a year ago. They depict family patterns and the continuation of the family.

Belt is another ancient and vivid symbol of the suit, but it has changed over time. It is not so easy to create - even an experienced master needs about two days of interesting and painstaking work.

Anna Molokovich, master of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House:
You should arrange the thread in color correctly to get such a pattern. There are different types of weaving: for example, on boards or with knots.

Rushniks have an important role in Belarusian history. People bring bread and salt on a rushnik to guests, it is put under newlyweds' feet - to some extent this thing has special energy and intended for special occasions. Maria Sarnavskaya has a love for weaving at the genetic level - her grandmother weaved, later her mother, now she is.

Maria Sarnavskaya, master of the Oktyabrsky district Crafts House:
You transfer your energy to this rushnik when creating it.

It is impossible to count how many rushniks she weaved. For a decade, her hands have been roughened from constant contact with the yarn, and thousands of intricate patterns have placed in her head.

Maria Sarnavskaya:
I asked a woman in an expedition where she takes these patterns from. She said that everything should be in your head.

But much more important is what you have in the heart. Each of these masters has an unconditional love for their work, land and traditions. They convey it to those who want to preserve and continue the bright path of their ancestors.

Если голуби идут навстречу друг другу – любовь в расцвете.  О чем говорят символы на вышивке и кто постигает секреты белорусских ремесел?