General description: Wooden doll in traditional Latvian dress
Dimensions 19 x 15 x 9 cm
Date when acquired 2015
Original Date Apparently bought in the 1970s
Source Flea market in Göttingen
The body and head are made of wood. The features are painted on. Her arms are made of white plastic straws with grey leather hands. Her hair is thick and long and is made of white threads drawn back from a middle parting and tied in two plaits at the sides going down to her waist.
She is wearing a linen blouse with a white lace ruff and white lace around the cuffs of the long sleeves. The lower third is woven with a design in red.
Over the blouse is a green felt waistcoat decorated with green zig-zag braid around the edges of the front.
She is wearing a long wide tartan woollen skirt in checks of red, white, black and green. Over the skirt is a thick linen apron woven with stripes and geometric patterns in green and red. The bottom edge is fringed. Under her skirt is a long white cotton petticoat with white lace around the bottom edge.
She has a headdress made of a band of red and yellow woven braid around her head like a crown. It has two long ribbons made of the braid hanging down the back to the hips.
Due to the tartan pattern used on her skirt, it seems that this doll represents a woman from the Vidzeme region as tartan became popular here in the second half of the 19th century. Vidzeme means literally “the Middle Land” and is situated in north-central Latvia. However, tartan skirts are also to be found in the Sēlija region (eastern Latvia).
The crown-like hat is representative of the tower-like headdress of unmarried Latvian women.
Source(s) of information
See Latvia: general information