Thursday, 11 August 2016

Postcards from Europe: Cyprus

When I plucked Cyprus from the hat I struggled to think of anything I knew about the country... haloumi? beautiful stamped coins? That was about it. A little investigation led me to a number of intriguing details, including the use of kohl on their eyes to detract flies and the sun's glare. I also discovered their wonderful laces made in the town Lefkara and most excitingly of all their wonderful folk dress. Cypriot folk dress is quite different to any other European dress, it's very Turkish in its influence... even the Greek Cypriot dress has touches... but let's slide over that...

The element I liked most was the pantaloons that poke out from beneath the dresses
Greek Cypriot: source 1

Turkish Cypriot: source 2
and the waistcoats that the men wear. The waistcoat I'm wearing was a gift from my mum earlier this year, she picked it up in a local chazza. I'm pretty sure it's a genuine Cypriot one, it's very lovely thick green velvet with a wonderful braid around the the edging. I think it's early 19th century, quite a bargain for a tenner!

Source: 3
During the course of this post I have been reading an awful lot on the history of Cyprus and it's utterly fascinating, it's definitely somewhere I need to read lots more about to fully understand it's history. It's very long, and quite checkered.

I'll be taking a break from Eu postcards for a short while as I have two upcoming events that require a fair amount of attention. First up is my Happy Tat sale at the end of August, if you're in Cornwall please do pop by (email me for more details), and of course Ancient Scent in early October. Ancient Scent is shaping up to be a great thing indeed, I'm fresh back from an open air oil drum firing in Lamorna last weekend. A truly magical affair. We fired pinch pots, and other weird and wonderful objects in an old oil drum, it was very wild and wonderful.

I hope you are all well, and I promise to try and post in between making, travelling and what not over the next few weeks.

Outfit Details

Cypriot velvet waistcoat - charity shop
1970s Indian block print dress - car boot sale
Bloomers - vintage sale
Scarf - Zara
Earrings - birthday gift from a friend



  1. Love your interpretations, Lally! This one is fantastic, you are such a talent! I like how you really get into your character - there is definitely an actress somewhere in there. And of course, these posts are very educational too.

  2. Oh, I drink in your photos like you wouldn't believe. Now people in libraries will wonder why there is a run on books about Cyprus all of a sudden. Hahaha!! You sound busy in the best possible way.

  3. You obviously frequent a different class of car booty to the ones I go to to have found that amazing red dress there. Lovely. Photo Source 1 is so delightful with her beautiful outfit and tray of chai. We went to Cyprus a few years ago. It has a lot of history as you know, but I got the feeling it was struggling a bit to maintain its identity. There are just so many foreigners carving it up, which felt rather sad to me. The Greek Cypriots we met were lovely. Xxx

  4. Your vest is really impressive, I agree that it is original and very valuable! Congratulations to your mom to have it given to you and found ..! I know little of Cyprus, yet it is a Mediterranean country .. but I agree that it is a fascinating place, as happens in places where different cultures meet, intertwine, they turn into something unique.
    These new photos are extraordinary!


  5. One of Jon's uncles lives in Cyprus, he's always on at us to visit although we've yet to find the time.
    You've captured the costume perfectly, those bloomers are the perfect touch. No wonder our friends who holidayed in Cornwall a couple of months ago said the car boots and chazzas were rubbish, you'd got there first! xxx

  6. love your take on Cyprus. It's one of many countries I know pretty much nothing about. Although, I can find it on the map.

  7. I LOVE LOVE LOVE what you are wearing! You look stunningly beautiful, the photos just gorgeous, full of creativity and atmosphere. Fabulous. xx

  8. Love that the women wore those long pantaloons under their skirts, how comfortable and colourful! The oil drum firing sounds wonderful, my son would have enjoyed that too. So lovely to get my Lally fix here sweetie xoxoxoox

  9. nice article thanks for sharing!!!!!!!!!

    Wall tapestry