This art has been used by people since very
ancient times. It flourished especially in the 19th
-20th centuries in Basarabia - a country where the
local people used to have thatched roofs made of
rye. Today the local craftsmen who are interested
in making knitted handicrafts create different
decorative household items or toys made of
natural materials such as straw, wheat, barley or
oats. Even if the number of these craftsmen is
decreasing, there are still many people who
practice it not only as a means of survival, but
also because the straw have also some curative
properties-things proved by specialists.
In Bucovina the wattles or wicker works have been
made since ancient times. They were used to make
huge baskets for keeping corn or carrying fruit or
grapes. Because wattles or wicker works are
meticulous activities, women are mainly interested
in making them. The leaf that wraps the corn cob is
used to create different decorative household items:
flowers, spoons, purses and bags or cushions.
The technique used to make such items is a special
one and is obtained by twisting the corn leaves. The
items obtained are used as decorative parts on
baskets, bags purses.
Bulrush has been considered a durable
material that can be found easily near the
ponds or swamps. It can be used both for
making household items and interior
decorations. Different traditional methods
are used. The most common is the one in
which a band is obtained from three
threads of bulrush which are woven
Weaving straw is a traditional craft
which requires skill, a sense of beauty
and minuteness. Straw, very fragile on
the one hand, but very rigid on the other
hand are harvested in July-August,
when the cereals are ripe and yellowish.
The process involves cutting the straw,
peeling, cleaning and then using them in
weaving hats for different formal or
A deeply rooted tradition that is peculiar only to
the pottery workshops from Marginea, Suceava
county. The manufacturing technique has been
almost the same since ancient times. After being
dipped into the water, the earth is kneaded by the
craftsman empty-handed. Than he chooses a
ball of earth, puts it on a special wheel which
begins to spin and everything gets a new shape.
Than, different geometrical ornaments are
added: branches of trees, spirals, broken lines,
The sculptors in wood, who are very talented
craftsmen, always embellish the thing they create. In
the Romanian art of processing the wood the
predominant style is the geometrical one, but the
decorative objects made of wood also contain floral,
antrophomorphic, zoomorphic patterns. In different
areas of the country, starting from the pillars, different
decorative technologies appeared: apple, wheel,
snakes, star, pear, human face, etc. These particular
shapes are still used by the Romanian craftsmen
In the past, women` s responsibilities
were making clothes and interior
weavings. Woven clothes draw
peoples’ attention due to their
diversity and beauty. The best known
part of the Romanian popular
costume was the shirt. The upper part
is beautifully decorated especially on
the shoulders. On the head, women in
the countryside used to wear a
handkerchief made of floss silk. This
is closely connected to traditions,
because an important moment of
marriage is covering the bride` s head
as a symbol of womanhood.
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Bucovina is also famous for its
cultural and religious sights.In
fact,the area has the greatest density
of monasteries, churches and
UNESCO monuments in the world.
By far the best known monastery is
Voronet Monastery -elected by the
famous Moldavian ruler,Stephen the
Great in 1488.
The archietectural style of this
monastery combines gothic and
bisanthines elements in a very
original way.The interior walls of the
monastery,present famous religious
scenes and the style is both majestic
and simple in details.The paintings
on the outside walls have a great
artistic value.The famous religious
scene “doomsday”-unique in its
beauty is remarkable for dramatic
mixture of colours among which the
predominant one is the famous “blus
Humor Monastery, built in 1520,was surrounded by high stone walls
the remainings of which can be still be seen today.The porch has a
very original architectural style;it is open in four archways in a broken
Moldovita Monastery, represents together with Voronet, an exceptional artistic
document of the epoch.The faces of the saints are very humanized,the profund
human feelings are very well delineated and the colours of the paintings are very well
reserved. The paintings on the interior walls are peculiar to a particular epoch.In
history,that is Stephen the Great’s period.
The central painting that represents the Moldavian ruler and his family capture the
inner life of the characters.
The Monastery which was built in the 16th century,looks like a real fortress with its
thick walls and towers for defence.The predominant colurs of the paintings, a
particulat shade of green and scarlet,give the impression of a book in miniature.
The most representative themes of the paintings on the outside walls are: “Ion’s tree”,
“Ioan climax’s Ladder” (which presents the struggle between the good and the evil
forces),as well as the Frieze of some famous philosophers and prophets of antiquity
such as David and Solomon,Sophocles and Aristotles or Homer.
The paintings of this famous monastery represent the most complex iconographic
ensemble on the Moldavian monasteries built in the Middle Ages.The monastery
museum houses masterpieces of medieval art.
It was erected by the famous Moldavian ruler Stephen the Great the ensemble has
suffered a lot a long the centuries because of natural disasters fires or robberies.
The monastery looks like a real fortress with its thick tall walls made of stone and a
high steeple built in a baroque style. Here is buried the Moldavian ruler, Stephen the
Great. His tombstone is made of white marble. The sarcophagus has beautiful
ornaments which are a real work of art. The tombstone has an exterior frieze made
of knitted oak leaves. The Putna settlement is also known for the museum situated
near the monastery which exhibits beautifully hand – made embroideries,
manuscripts tinned with a thin layer of silver or gold and all sorts of religious objects,
icons and ornaments
Bucovina is a county which has many beautiful customs and traditions. Among them,
there can be mentioned winter traditions: Christmas tradition and New Year`s
They involve: decorating the Christmas tree singing Christmas Carols, popular
theatre with masks and masked people which satirize negative aspects (laziness,
idleness, foolishness), decorating the houses with popular towels and small carpets
beautifully woven by the women in the countyside.
On the first day of the New Year it is customary for children to go from house to
house and throw cereal seeds, the so-called “Sowing” which symbolize the
abundance for the next year.
Another important celebration for us is Epiphany which involves sanctifying the water
during a special religious ceremony, water which is then drunk by the faithful; it
symbolizes the purification of their souls.
The most important religious event for us is Easter. It
consists of a religious ceremony that takes place in all
the churches of the country, followed by three days of
sermons and pilgrimages to the holy places.
The Easter dishes that follow are carefully prepared by
women and include red eggs-symbolizing Jesus Christ`s
blood. They represented the starting point for the art of
painting the eggs and adorning them with beads, which
has become so popular nowadays.
Among other traditional dishes can be mentioned: Easter
Cake (cheese and dough), sponge cake, lamb wine, etc.
The festival associated with the names of the churches
are a good opportunity for people to come to the church
with small gifts: flowers, candles, oil, flour, etc.