The Traditions of linen tops Weaving and Flax Cultivation in Lithuania

linen tops can be used for many purposes, but is most commonly used for clothing and decoration. It is also appreciated for its natural beauty, durability and freshness. The flax plant’s fibres are used to make linen. They can be found all over the world, from Canada to Ethiopia. Flax has been grown since ancient Egypt and Ethiopia. The latest dyed flax fibres dating back to 30000 BC are the most recent.

Lithuania is a small country in Northern Europe that has a rich history and linen holds a special place among the nation’s arts, crafts, traditions, and arts. Since the time of the Baltic tribes, which were present in the country’s territory around 2000 BC, flax has been grown there. In Medieval times when Lithuania’s Grand Duchy was the largest country in Europe, linen was the only fabric that was used by both the soldiers and peasants for clothing (apart from the armour). Flax and linen were a significant part of Lithuania’s exports even in the early 20th-century, when other fabrics were much more readily available. Although linen’s importance in Lithuania has declined over the years, there are still folk artists who weave linen in the country to preserve the tradition.

Folk songs are a significant part of Lithuanian heritage and show the importance of linen. People sang songs at every opportunity, from the seeding, cutting, and weaving of linen, up to the middle of the 20th century. Other folk songs about war and marriage also include linen, which is used to symbolize prosperity and well-being.

Lithuanians have an annual celebration that commemorates the importance of flax, linen, and other folk songs. “Flax is one the oldest cultures in Lithuania and it is not to be forgotten. The miraculous healing properties of linen were known by our ancestors. The formation of the Lithuanian mindset was a key part of linen’s role.” Zenonas Macernis is one of the festival organizers. It is held every year in Budraiciai. This festival brings together artisans and craftsmen from all over Lithuania who share their knowledge and sell their handmade clothes, toys, and towels. Folk ensembles are also a part of this traditional festival.

Each region of Lithuania had its own traditions for seeding and cutting linen. There was a commonality in the traditions of different regions, with flax cutting being primarily a woman-only job. It’s not surprising that many songs were sung during this process. Some of these songs have survived to our day. Some of the most interesting traditions are from Zemaitija in the North-Western part of Lithuania. The cutters waited patiently for the rabbit to emerge from the field after the flax cutting was finished. Sometimes the most skilled cutters caught the rabbit and gave the family a tasty dinner. There are many beliefs about when and how to seed flax. In Dadotkai for example, the best time to plant flax is at the end of May. However, this was only possible when the junipers were dusty and the Moon is gibbous. Also, the wind blows from South. It’s quite a variety of conditions, isn’t it?

Once the flax has been prepared for linen making, it is up to the women of Lithuania to complete the task. The man of the house was required to care for the horses and other animals, as well as oversee the cultivation of crops. While the women had to be skilled in cooking, weaving, and spinning, this tradition has been around since ancient times. Every house had a spinning wheel, and linen was used to make clothes, towels, and other daily items. Everyone in rural areas used linen to make clothes at that time. It was 100% natural and made locally. People wore linen clothes grown in their fields.

Today, linen clothes are associated with holidaying on the French Riviera rather than with farmers living in the countryside. This was due to the increase in demand for cheaper fabrics and lower profits from flax cultivation. Although there are still people who grow flax and make hand-made linen products, their numbers have declined dramatically over time.