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Woman’s Blouse and Skirt

Curated Submission
Kayville, Saskatchewan, Canada
1920 – 1930
DIMENSIONS in centimetres
119 x 69
Materials & techniques
Cotton, sequins, glass beads; Plain woven, crocheted, embroidered, beaded, velvet, hand-sewn, machine-sewn
Gift of Genevieve Gordon
Textile Museum of Canada T2009.23.1-2
A white embroidered blouse with a black embroidered skirt comprises a traditional festive costume in Romania. The donated outfit was made by Maria Vulc, probably for her wedding, and then passed on to her daughter and granddaughter (the donor).
Maria Vulc was born in 1897 in the village of Sucevita in Bucovina, Romania, and died in 1984 in Canada. She immigrated to Canada in 1912, married Reverend Pavel Vulc, and settled on a farm in southern Saskatchewan near Kayville, a hamlet founded by Romanian settlers in 1905 that later became a thriving agricultural community. The Vulcs were the first couple to be married in the nearby Romanian Orthodox Church of St. Mary’s in 1915. She made her festive blouse from white flour or sugar sacks available on the farm, and, almost a century old, it still carries printed brand labels with one word “EXTRA” still legible, the rest washed out by the time and use. Today, the blouse has an addition of commercial white cotton fabric that was machine-stitched at the waist to increase the length, probably for the granddaughter.
There are photographs in the family archive showing three generations of women wearing this blouse and the skirt – Maria Vulc in the cabbage field in 1959, her daughter Genoveva in front of the farmhouse in 1940s, and her granddaughter Genevieve in 1960. 
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