Folk Fashion: Greek brands know how to folklore

Folklore fashion stands for the ethnic fashion code, culture, and lifestyle of a country. It is not only a style but a way of expression of a whole nation or a specific region in a specific period of time. There are many folklore trends that people still follow which is a good thing actually because by wearing ethnic clothes, will definitely give a style and an identity. Be careful though and choose well. Sometimes overdoing or dressing up in a wrong way, maybe blasphemy.

In Greece, people in ancient times wore sandals, slippers, soft shoes, or boots as footwear and dressed -up with two pieces of clothing draped about the body: an undergarment (chiton or peplos) and a cloak (himation or chlamys). I am mentioning the “ancient Greek style” because that is a major influence on Greeks and generally to fashion up until now. Nowadays there are some Greek folklore brands worth- noticing and we managed to gather them up in a list and present them to you. Each brand produces several kinds of products, although we chose the ones we believe they should be known for.

Sandals by TR3IS

Greek sandals were first introduced in ancient times by the Greek god Hermes. They were mentioned in books as the “feathered sandals of Hermes” which gave him the power of speed so that he could easily give messages to people. In Roman times the leather sandal was animal skin tied with ropes around the calves. Women also wore them in their home. The Greek sandals differed from Roman because they had many leather straps to secure the foot. The soles were made of cow skin –which was better quality- and were made of several layers.

These days, high-quality Greek sandals with a twist are still produced, but we prefer those made by the brand TR3IS. They are true to the prototype, using real leather and high-quality materials. Also, every type of shoe they design has its very own character (edgy or minimal) and name (Faidra, Athina, Clio etc). You can’t go wrong with TR3IS sandals since they have been mentioned in Vogue Italia. Check their footwear collection here.

Espadrilles by NENE

Although espadrilles were first made in France, it has always been a classic type of shoes for middle and low class -peasants and workers. The manufacture of espadrilles is generally more complex than that of sandals and it points to the period of Ottoman rule in Greece.

Nene’s espadrilles made their debut last summer. “Our products are designed and produced in Greece and our goal is to spread the Greek element and culture through fashion!” says Helen Anastasiadis, the creative director of the brand. She is majorly inspired by her favourite Greek island, Patmos, and this year she created the collection “ATRIUM” SS2017 with the addition of minimal and oversized clothes. Check the collection here.

Graphic fashion by PETIT MANOU

Petit Manou is the inspiration and endeavor of the artist Irene Mnatsakanian. She began to expand on fashion by creating the brand in 2016, driven by her unceasing desire for creativity and evolution. The graphics Irene manages to imprint on fashion accessories are one hundred percent Greek inspired. This is what makes it folklore. Illustration of fish, chickens, donkeys -inspired by the typical life in the local countryside- and Greek coffee-houses (a.k.a. kafenia) staring on handbags. Handmade earrings steal your heart, cute postcards and homeware make a homage to Greek lifestyle.

Everything that she creates, from product to packaging, is handmade. The materials she uses are cotton fabrics, red and white clay, marble, watercolours, and acrylic. The simple patterns, geometric forms, minimal aesthetics, and quality, characterizes Petit Manou’s pursuit to offer accessible art.

Jewlery by MARIVEE

MARIVEE accessories are handmade and produced in Greece. Real leather, precious stones, unique fabrics, textures, and unbelievable combinations give character to the brand. Everything is done with personal care by Vasiliki Roussos, the creative director of the brand.

Her jewelry stand out, because of its unique flair -bohemian and Greek folklore. Feathers and tassels, as well as the colours she uses, are absolutely ethnic. “I want confident women to wear my creations, that want to stand out and dare to wear colour. Women with bohemian soul” says Vasiliki. If you find yourself in this description, maybe you would like to visit her online store here.

Kourelou Bags by MASLINDA

Fani Voyiatzi designed the first kourelou bag in 2009 and ever since it became a trademark for Greek style. She was inspired by the everyday life of the people at Greek islands, who find utility and beauty in things that seem to seize to be useful.

These colourful carpets on the stalls and the thresholds of tiny whitewashed island houses (I couldn’t imagine back then that I would live in a house like this a few years later!) is for me a very characteristic image that had captures the whole essence of the Greek summer. This “shot” is my inspiration”. We adore this up-cycling idea that became big -often copied by many designers- and now selling kourelou bags to boutiques in Paris, Tokio and worldwide through her online shop. Check Maslinda designs here.

Beachwear & Homewear by FOLKLOR

FOLKLOR was established in 2015 by Vallie Sofiadi. After studying interior design, Vallie started her fashion brand influenced by her love for traditional aesthetic. “I adore when the folklore, ethnic patterns meet modernism, so my creations are inspired by Greek tradition”.

The excess and the motifs of another era inspired by the designs in laces and doilies, and textiles woven by looms are transformed through pixels in a minimalistic way on fabrics. She creates homeware, pillows, purses and beach accessories. Her flair is modern with a splash of the ethnic essence. For Vallie tradition is something of great importance. These are some of the reasons that we have chosen to present FOLKLOR beach towels. Check them here.

Handbags by get- E.V.e.N.

Eleni, Valia and Niki (E.V.e.N.) are the three women behind the brand. They make backpacks, beach bags, tote bags, and pochettes all influenced by ethnic patterns and style. The SS2017 collection has three different types of bags, the Isla bag, the Tierra, the Shade, and the Amalfi collection. You can pick the style and type of bag you want based on your style -whether you are a bohemian or a minimalist. Check their collection here.

Dresses by JUNO

Like we mentioned at the beginning of this advertorial, chiton and peplos were only two types of dress what ancient Greeks used to wear. In the Modern Period, queen Amalia created a romantic folksy court dress, which became a national Greek costume still known as the “Amalía dress”.

If you take a look at the creation of the brand Juno, you will find references from the past designed for the present. Chic, high-quality dresses which definitely have a Greek identity. When you wear them, you don’t feel like you are in a local parade, but in a cosmopolitan Greek island. You can find them here.

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