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Swedish Doll

Curated Submission
Early to mid-20th century
DIMENSIONS in centimetres
12 x 43
Materials & techniques
Cotton, mohair, glass, metal, composition; Hand-sewn, hand-beaded
Saskatchewan Western Development Museum WDM-2013-S-8
In the early 1920s Vivian Morton, wife of Saskatchewan’s first provincial archivist, Arthur Silver Morton, and a group of like-minded Saskatoon women wanted to encourage traditional crafts. In large part their interests were a natural extension of the international Arts and Crafts movement that focused on handmade work over factory-produced industrial design. Morton and her group founded the Saskatoon Arts and Crafts Society (SACS), which lasted from 1924 to 1956.
The SACS provided supplies to local women so that they could make the traditional crafts popular in their ethnic cultures – mostly Ukrainian, Doukhobor, Polish, and Swedish. When completed, the crafts were sent to the SACS, who assessed and priced it. The society did not buy the work but held regular exhibitions and sales. Craftswomen were paid when their pieces sold.
Vivian Morton commissioned this doll and several others clothed in traditional costumes. The doll wears pieces of clothing common to many Swedish folk costumes: a sleeveless bodice over a traditional white shift, a long dark skirt and apron, and a head covering. The type of head covering and the horizontally striped apron may be a reference to the Rättvik style of folk dress from the Dalarna region of Sweden.
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