Abruzzo: Traditional Abruzzese costume
Article about Abruzzo published by Italian Heart on November 13, 2015: http://www.italianheart.com.au/2015/11/traditional-abruzzese-costume
Wide and colorful Handkierchief in silk, cotton or wool with fringes. Handmade white long shirt in linen. Wide neckline decorated with crochet or with tombolo. Long and wide sleeves. Typical garment of the traditional abruzzese costume is a red-purple colored, rectangular rag that used to be winded up tightly to the body, from the chest to the legs, it worked as a petticoat (Lu fasciatore). It was made by wool and traditionally made at home. Another mantle that looked like the fasciatore but bigger was used in winter to cover from the head down.
Women working in fields used to wear “lu fazzulittone”, a shawl in black or brown. A lilac, purple, light blue or green bustier was the bra. On their shoulders they used to have a colorful handkierchief. A wool grey skirt tight on the waist and long till the ankles. During the work on the fields the skirt got bent and rounded and then knotted in forming two characteristic ends. Furthermore, these farmers used to carry a big rag attached to their waist that had different functions. Cotton handmade stockings were a must. On their feet the “chiochie” or leather or rubber slippers (“sciappitelle” or “scarpittelle”).
Traditional abruzzese costume for celebrations
Fine cotton shirt adorned with lace on the necklace and creases on the chest. Heavy wool skirt with velvet appliqués. Taffetà jacket and damask silk apron. A damask silk shawl on the head and neck. Cotton stockings, black leather shoes with small hill, big golden earrings (“li sciacqaje”).
Traditional abruzzese wedding dress
In the traditional society wedding represented the most important event in someone’s life, after the birth of a child.
The hair would get brushed in long braids adjusted behind and at each side of the head. On the head there was the veil or a tulle, white and long Handkierchief that gently laid over the shoulders. The red silk bustier with long sleeves and cuffs tied with golden bottons. The white skirt and the light blue linen apron. The black leather shoes and the white stokings.
The decoration would often be the esthetic and decorative complement essential for the traditional dress. Filigree was the most common technique in making jewels because it would make possible to realize light objects with a small amount of gold but with a great decorative effect.
Traditional abruzzese mourning clothes
Jacket, closed shirt tied at the front with bottons. Large wide skirt with vertical creases. Stockings with hem and pockets. On the head scarf or handkierchief tied under the chin. Everything strictly in black.
The handkierchief on the head based on the abruzzese costume
The classic “fazzoletto” (handkierchief), unavoidable headgear in the folkloristic abruzzese women’s attire, represented a physical situation, a psychological condition or a mood based on the way it was put and adorned on the head.
Folded into a triangle it wrapped the forehead and it got tied under the nape with the end left hanging on the neck. Typical working appearance, it used to express fatigue or boredom.
Folded in a triangle and let loose onto the head: a casual rest appearance, it expressed calm and tranquility. But if the edges were tied under the chin it would express a certain dislike or pain.