Skip to main content

Baby Cap (Cuffia)

Public Submission
Lombardy, Italy
Materials & techniques
Linen; Cutwork
Italian Cultural Centre of Vancouver
The preparation of clothing and household linens, especially for women, was an important part of the initiation into life changes, especially in anticipation of childbirth and marriage. According to Filomena Picciano, a professional tailor from Oratino, Molise, Italy, who immigrated to Canada in November, 1967, in the case of childbirth, a mother-to-be prepared for the baby’s trousseau in the third month of pregnancy and continued for the next six months until the baby was born. For women of the lower and middle classes this often required time away from work to prepare for their next stage in life. As well, it necessitated the assistance of many members of the extended family, such as the mother, grandmother, aunts and even sisters. For those who came from affluent backgrounds, this outlay of time was not as onerous, since they could afford to hire tailors and seamstresses to prepare the needed items. Items which assured that the bride, and later, the baby’s needs, would be met for the entire first year.

This baby cap is made from linen and is finished in a cutwork (It. Intaglio) design. The cap has a draw string to tighten allowing it to fit more closely to the baby’s head. The fabric came from the North of Italy but a family member may have made the cap. The cap shows signs of being altered to fit the baby’s head precisely. 
Submit a related artifact
Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to Pinterest Email More...

Main sponsors

  • Logo of the Imperial Oil Foundation with accompanying characteristic oval 'Esso' symbol.

Institutional partners