Norway celebrates Syttende Mai – Norwegian Constitution Day on May 17th … and in true Alaskan style, Petersburg celebrates it with a four day festival featuring Vikings, Valkyries and traditional Norwegian costumes (Bunad). It will take more than one post to show you just some of the fun we had at the Festival, but I’ll start with the beautiful folk costume fashion show.
Bunader vary widely in color and style throughout Norway and other parts of Scandinavia, such as this Sami costume from the far north.
But what’s really interesting is that these are not just costumes; in Norway they are worn for special occasions such as weddings and christenings. Colors and features show the region the wearer is from, and the detailed embroidery and jewelry make each piece unique. Many of the bunader in Petersburg’s show were made by our harbormaster Glo, or were purchased in Norway for her collection. Glo is not only the seamstress… she also hand-embroidered many of these gorgeous outfits, which can take 1-2 years to complete.
Children’s bunader are made to allow for growth, until a cherished heirloom is passed down to a younger child.
I had to chuckle at these two little boys… they really didn’t want to be models!
I love to look at all the details, such as the embroidered purses…
…and the embroidered bodices and solje jewelry.
A few men were brave enough to model their own (or one of Glo’s) bunader, and I most admired the hand-knit patterned socks.
Of course the Vikings and Valkyries had to get in on the action…
…taking a break from marauding and pillaging. You don’t tell Vikings they’re not welcome!