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ukrainian wreath avaHeadwear is among those most informative accessories ever. They can give info about gender, age, marital status, social class, financial well-being of a person, etc. And Ukrainian folk headdresses are no exception. Today, we’d like to show you the best, most unusual, and even bizarre headgear that occurs in this rich European culture. While day-to-day headpieces were very alike throughout the country, the bridal and festive headdresses often varied in different regions. So, let’s have a look at all those coifs, kerchiefs, headbands, wreaths, bonnets, and other female headdresses used in Ukraine since ancient times till now.

 

Women’s bridal headdress called “namitka”. Bukovyna area, western Ukraine. It is a long rectangular piece of cloth with whitework embroidery draped over the head

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Traditional headgear of a married woman called “namitka” from Rivne region, northwestern Ukraine. There are dozens of ways how to drape namitka – this one is pretty unusual

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Richly embroidered women’s bonnet called “ochipok”. Zhytomyr region, Polissia area, northern Ukraine. It was traditionally worn under the kerchief

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Female headdress from Zhytomyr region, northern Ukraine. It consists of a coif and two kerchiefs. The coif underneath serves to hold the hair in place. Married females braided their hair and created a kind of a crown around the head. The coif was worn over that crown of hair. On top of the coif, there is an unusual kerchief. It is rectangular rather than square and has patterned ends. When it is put on the head, the kerchief forms a dovetail shape. The second kerchief often was a sign of wealth. It was tied under the chin. This particular one is made from silk and patterned – expensive kerchief

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Women’s kerchief, curiously draped. Zhytomyr region, northern Ukraine. Such kerchiefs were common in Ukraine, worn by most of women, but they could be draped differently. Sometimes, there was a traditional way of draping for certain village or region, in other cases, a particular person had a preferred shape for her kerchief

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Women’s headdress called “namitka” from Volyn’ region, northwestern Ukraine. It is a long rectangular piece of cloth with embroidered edges

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Another similar headdress called “namitka” from Volyn’ region, northwestern Ukraine. The draping is also similar

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Female folk headwear from Sumy region, northeastern Ukraine. The set includes a bonnet and a large kerchief with floral pattern. The bonnet is called “horned ochipok” because it has a bulge at the front that symbolizes a horn. Such stylized horns are sometimes seen in vintage Ukrainian costumes (though, they’re rare) and they symbolize fertility

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Unique headwear of a matchmaker at a traditional wedding from Volyn’ region, northwestern Ukraine. The piece consists of a wooden headband – serves as a carcass; a long rectangular piece of cloth called “namitka”; a bright fabric band made from colorful ribbons sewn together and adorned with beads; and 2 bunches of rooster feathers – serve as a decoration

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Wedding headdress from Cherkasy region, central Ukraine. The headgear has several layers. It includes a large wreath made of artificial flowers, yarn balls, glass beads, and gold threads (this wreath isn’t authentic, it is a reconstruction), many various ribbons, a headpiece called “lopatushka” (sort of a headband made from silk ribbons sewn together), and a small blue silk kerchief tied like a headband

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Bride's wedding headdress from Ivano-Frankivsk region, western Ukraine. It is a wreath made from feathers and artificial flowers

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Another wedding wreath made from artificial flowers from Ivano-Frankivsk region, western Ukraine

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Curios bridal headwear from Ivano-Frankivsk region, western Ukraine. It is made from yarn, foil, and metal elements. The shape is rather odd, but it has its charm

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Female headdress called “namitka” from Volyn region, northwestern Ukraine

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Festive colorful wreath with ribbons from Poltava region, central Ukraine. It is a headdress of unmarried girls and brides. The wreath is made from bright pom-pons and decorated with metal beads and threads

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Women’s headdress called “namitka” from Volyn region, northwestern Ukraine

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Ornate Ukrainian bridal headdress. It is adorned with embroidery, beadwork, sequins, coins, and colorful ribbons

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Female headgear called “namitka” from Lviv region, western Ukraine

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Very unique, large bridal headdress made from feathers, artificial flowers, beads, and ribbons. It is used only in one village of Ukraine, in Ivano-Frankivsk region. This kind of a wreath is still used in this village as a wedding headdress

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Female headdress called “lopatushka” made from silk ribbons sewn together. Cherkasy region, central Ukraine

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Rich multicomponent bridal headwear from western Ukraine. It consists of colorful ribbons, artificial flowers (could be replaced by fresh flowers), and many beaded ribbons (each of them is separate and put overlapping one after the other)

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