Since the 17th century, women in Hardanger have sewn and used
bodice inserts with their folk costumes. Small, beautiful pieces of
cloth, richly decorated, worn in the cleavage of their
vests/bodices. In making these, they used the prettiest and most
precious of what they had: wonderful silk bands, pretty beads,
beautiful fabrics, various embroideries, metal lace in silver and
gold. The bodice insert is inspired by Renaissance fashion, and
combined with use of ancient symbols, and makes a piece of clothing
offering both adornment, warmth and protection.
Women typically had several bodice inserts. Some they had sewn
themselves, some were inherited, some were gifted to them. Many of
these have found their way to Hardanger Folk Museum. For the first
time, we open our collection, and display our grand collection for
joy, wonder and inspiration for all who love history, tradition,
folk costumes, handicraft and needlework. Here are inserts in a
wide variety of techniques - cross stitches, bead work,
applications, pattern darning and more. None are identical, but you
can tell they are all somehow related. Included in the exhibition
are bodice inserts from Voss Folk museum, Skredhaugen, Kvam museum
and the Fonneland collection.
Outside the exhibition you'll find a small bead workshop, where
you can learn sowing with beads, tread beads, colour or design your
own insert on paper.
Would you like to visit the exhibition more than once? Buy a seasoncard, and
get free coffee/tea in our nice café with view of the fjord.