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IntroductionExplore the Communities

Section title: Doukhobor
Introduction |  History |  Daily Life |  Culture |  References

Daily Life


The Doukhobors brought a traditional style of clothing with them from Russia. As these decorative clothes wore out, the women replaced them with simpler ones. The women made all the community's clothes. The men made the shoes and boots. The Doukhobors raised sheep to get wool and grew flax to make linen for cloth. The women produced wool and linen yarns on their spinning wheels. They took this yarn and put it on looms to weave it into fabrics to make clothes, sheets, towels and blankets. Wool was also used to knit mitts and socks.

Flax comb used in making linen, wool carders, and fancy wool socks knitted by the Doukhobors in Russia about 1895   Loomed Doukhobor men's sashes, men's traditional loomed linen suit, women's Doukhobor costume, an old Doukhobor apron and old dress slippers   Man, woman and child in Doukhobor costume, showing prayer sash and marriage scarf, circa 1903

Men wore trousers and shirts, made of wool or linen. When they dressed up, they wore knee-length coats with a striped woolen sash.

The women wore linen blouses and underskirts. Their overskirts were woolen. They wore a small cap with a kerchief over the top and tied under the chin. Clothes were sometimes decorated with fine embroidery in bright colours. Rusty red was a favourite colour for clothes. Kerchiefs ("platok") were often white, and decorated with fine embroidery. Aprons ("khvartik") were worn for everyday use and for prayers and were also embroidered. The women also had marriage scarves that were beautifully embroidered.

  Boys wearing one-piece garment standing in flax field, Grand Forks, British Columbia

Around 1915, Peter Verigin, their leader, decided that boys and girls under twelve should wear a one-piece garment from May through October. During the summer, the boys wore a type of long shirt and the girls a plain straight dress. They went barefoot and bareheaded. After they turned twelve children wore adult clothes. In the winter, everyone had warm sheepskin coats, fur hats and quilted vests called "dushagreika," which means "spirit warmers".

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