February 5, 2015

1437 PORTUGAL (Braga / Viana do Castelo) - Woman spinner of Pêrre linen

Entre Douro e Minho is one of the historical provinces of Portugal which encompassed, as the name suggests (Between-Douro-and-Minho), the country's northern Atlantic seaboard between the Douro and Minho rivers, practically the area which included the current Viana do Castelo, Braga and Porto districts. In 1936, when Portugal was divided into 13 official provinces, Entre Douro e Minho was split into Minho Province and Douro Litoral Province. Minho, dissolved in 1976, included the districts of Braga and Viana do Castelo, and had the capital in the city of Braga. Minho has substantial Celtic influences and shares many cultural traits with neighbouring Galicia in Spain. Perre is a parish in the municipality of Viana do Castelo, situated on the right bank of the river Lima.

Hand-embroidered linen and cotton, traditional costumes, and lacework (a speciality of coastal fishing towns) are sold all over the country, but especially in seaside resorts such as Nazaré and Viana do Castelo. First capital of the Portuguese nation, Guimarães is a centre for linen production, and has been at least since a fair was established here in 1258, in which year both linen cloth and household linen were for sale. Castelo Branco is a hot spot for embroidered bed covers. Bobbin lace comes from Vila do Conde, Peniche and the eastern Algarve. There are also several speciality shops in Lisbon selling lacework and linen.

The traditional costume of the region (Traje de Lavradeira) is probably the most famous of Portugal, and the most colorful. The base layer is a linen chemise (camisa), often with embroidery on the front, the shoulders, upper sleeves and cuffs. Today, the chemise is usually made in two pieces, a blouse and a narrow underskirt. A full petticoat is worn on top of the first. There is a separate bodice (colete), which is always sewn in two parts. The skirt (saia), is made of heavy wool or linen. If of wool, it has a background color of either red or blue/green, with narrow stripes of other colors widely spaced. There is a narrow band gathered into the waistband, and then the body of the skirt is gathered into this band. The apron, avental, is hand-woven of thick wool, designs are formed by pulling small loops of yarn out. It is double gathered in the same way as the skirt. A kerchief is allways worn on the head.

About the stamp
The stamp is part of the series Gardens of Portugal, about which I wrote here.

Minho Province - Wikipedia
Linen,Cotton & Lace - Lonely Planet Portugal
Lavradeira Costume, Viana do Castelo, Minho province, Portugal - Folk Costume & Embroidery

Sender: Eduardo Morais (direct swap)
Sent from Coimbra (Coimbra / Portugal), on 20.07.2014

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