The book is about white shawls decorated with embroidery and tablet-woven bands dating from the end of the 18th and the first half of the 19th century – the Krustpils type villaine, who represent one of the most ornate kinds of shawls known in the territory of Latvia, constituting an essential element of late 18th and early 19th century women’s ceremonial dress, and representing outstanding works of Latvian folk art in terms of composition and technical execution.
The author has identified practically all the Krustpils-type villaines from the first half of the 19th century that are preserved up to the present day in museum collections in Latvia, as well as material collected in various periods and with various levels of knowledge.
Analysed in the work is development of the Kruspils-type villaine across time and space, from a morphological perspective (the set of garments constituting dress, and individual garments) and from an artistic-stylistic perspective (raw material, designs, composition, decorative techniques and color). Its place in the European cultural space is outlined, identifying similarities to textiles of other peoples, showing their development and changes in the cut of dress and ornamentation under the influence of the age and fashion.
The book consist of the following chapters:
? Sources and literature
? The history of unsewn shawls – villaines in Latvia
? The names of shawls
? Forms of shawls in Latvia
? Analysis of the characteristics of shawls
– Production and decoration of villaines
– The wearing of villaines
The appendix covers 42 Krustpils-type villaines from the first half of the 19th century. This is a kind of catalogue of the embroidered villaines preserved up to thepresent day, with photographs of this historic material, precisely drawn designs and technical descriptions.