When people think of the cultural heritage of Croatia, they often look to centuries-old traditions being kept alive by a small handful of practitioners. But a new wave of young Croatian designers is taking inspiration from the country’s rich history of folk arts and crafts and applying it to contemporary fashion and accessories.
Capsule Collection Lace earrings by SlavonikaCroatian National Tourist Board
Handmade lace is a revered Croatian handicraft. Historic lacemaking centers are located on Pag and Hvar islands and in the town of Lepoglava. Several designers have found innovative ways to incorporate these ancient traditions into thoroughly modern designs.
SOPAR, lace dressCroatian National Tourist Board
Along with her sister Tamara, fashion model Helena Šopar launched Šopar Collection, whose designs often incorporate Pag lace.
The sisters, who grew up on Pag, say that their fashions pay homage to their island home but are designed with modern women in mind.
SOPAR, lace earringsCroatian National Tourist Board
Transparent lace dresses and skirts, lace earrings and blouses with delicate lace details characterize the pieces by this flowy feminine brand.
SOPARCroatian National Tourist Board
Fashion industry veteran Lidija Lešić, founder of My Choice Slavonika draws inspiration from the traditional Lepoglava lacemaking.
Her colorful hand-crocheted earrings and handbags adapt the patterns of Lepoglava lace into elegant airy designs.
Slavonika topCroatian National Tourist Board
Slavonika, white lace bagCroatian National Tourist Board
Even Croatian streetwear gives a nod to the lacemaking traditions of Pag, Hvar and Lepoglava.
Chypka, founded by a tattoo artist and a clothing designer, features t-shirts, bike shorts and hoodies that all incorporate Croatian lace in some manner.
ChypkaCroatian National Tourist Board
It may show up as a logo on a t-shirt, at the hem of leggings or shorts, or on the back of a hoodie emblazoned with the saying, “It’s not your grandmother’s lace.” Chypka has a retail store in Zagreb and also sells its designs online.
Hoodie with a lace details by ChypkaCroatian National Tourist Board
Chypka has a retail store in Zagreb and also sells its designs online.
Modern interpretation of Lace on a T-shirtCroatian National Tourist Board
Croatian Licitar hearts, traditional decorated cookies exchanged as keepsakes and sold as souvenirs around the country, are central to the designs of From Croatia With Love, the spinoff of longstanding Croatian fashion house Hippie Garden.
From Croatia with Love ShoesCroatian National Tourist Board
The collection of cheerful, colorful gifts and accessories, including soaps, scarves, toiletry bags and beach towels, are all adorned with Licitar hearts and the slogan, “from Croatia with Love.”
From Croatia with Love fashion brandCroatian National Tourist Board