One of the most famous subethnic groups of Ukrainians is Hutsul people. They live in a certain area in the Carpathian Mountains and have an extremely rich and bright culture. Particularly, Hutsul traditional clothing differs a lot from any other Ukrainian folk costume. Today, we’ll talk about a charming accessory used by Hutsul men – a festive hat called “krysania”. Every Hutsul boy used to dream about this stylish headdress and every young man knew how to wear it to look carefree and nonchalant.
A krysania or kresania is the traditional male hat of Hutsuls, Ukrainians who live in Carpathian regions of the country. Hutsuls have always loved attractive and eye-catching clothing, practically all of their festive folk garments were very colorful, bright, and richly decorated. And so, this headdress looks just as fancy or even a bit dandyish.
A krysania is made from black felt. It has an almost flat, roundish crown and small or middle-sized brims, up-turned just a little.
But also, krysania is always elaborately embellished. It can be colorful ribbons, cords, pom-pons, sequins, feathers (rooster or capercaillie), beads or seed beads, brass circlet, embroidery, and so on so forth. Some hats are adorned with just a bit of ornamentation, others have the side of the crown fully covered in decorations.
As usual, the most ornate are groom’s krysania hats. Like this one.
In the past, people used to wear this headpiece for any special occasion, like weddings, family celebrations, to the church, to a date, to a town fair, etc. Today, krysania is worn perhaps during folk festivals and similar events. But you have a bigger chance to see it in a museum than in the street. And it’s a pity, really, because this hat looks cute and festive.
Fun fact! In the past, when krysania was an obligatory men’s accessory in Ukraine, wealthy young men could wear it askew, while poor boys were allowed to wear it only in a level position. Again, sort of a dandyish feature.