The development of Estonian folk costume• Estonian folk costumes differ by region, there are four major groups — Southern, Northern, Western Estonia, and the Islands.• Folk costume identified place of birth, national belonging, age, social and marital status of a person.• Women wore linen shirts, headdresses, *striped skirts*, linen robes, black woollen long-coats, fur-coats, *aprons*, belts, kerchiefs, stockings, mittens and heel-less peasant shoes.• Men wore linen shirts, white woollen or linen pants, black woollen long-coats, waistcoats, a linen robes, fur-coats, woollen or leather belts, stockings, mittens, heel-less peasant shoes and sheep-black hard felt hats.
Clothes may be divided into three gruops:1. Festive clothes which were used for church visits, weddings, funerals and were passed from generation to generation; they were fancy and with jewelry.2. Visiting clothes were for errands, business and visits of less festive nature.3. Working clothes were worn every day, were made of poorer material and without decorations; sometimes old visiting clothes were used. 1. 2. 3.
Making of the national costume...• The main materials: flax and wool.• Most of the clothes were bleached white, woollen outer garments were mainly sheep-brown or black.• The wool for making skirts was dyed with herbs.
Old customs•Young girls wore noheadgear for most of theyear, even during milderwinter periods, they usedonly a hair-band.•A married woman had tocover her head and wearan *apron*.•apronless mistress of thefarm would damage thefertility of the fields.
Men Linen shirtHeadgear Vest Coat Belt Mittens Peasant shoes
Finery• was handed from generation to generation.• The jewellery and ornaments had to protect the wearer against the evil.• A woman wore her beads day and night, at a party or at work, and took them to her grave with her, beads were put around a little girls neck when her first tooth was cut.• Belts and mittens were believed to have very strong protective powers.
• The most festive adornment of an Estonian woman was conical *brooch* and a necklace made of coins.• Belts were thought to be a support, give strength to the body and protect it from illness, therefore people wore belts even at night.
Nowadays• folk costumes became less used.• At the same time it became increasingly popular in Estonia to wear folk costume on festive occasions: at song festivals and various national events.