Oslo the Capital city of NorwayOslo-view-Nancy-Bundt-Innovation-Norway-edit1-943x0



Celebrating May 17th (Norwegian Constitution Day) is a huge event in Oslo so it is most appropriate we talk about the

bunad for Oslo….but the one from Oslo is called the:


OSLO costume

Efforts to create a folk costume that would be special to Oslo, started later than it did in many other cities in Norway. Oslo as both the capital and a port city, has been in close contact with the rest of Europe through the ages, this has led to a large influence from European lifestyle and culture – which had brought  urban clothing and  created fashion history in the city. You saw a different style of dress more often in the capital than elsewhere in the country. And therefore, this was perhaps the main reason why the Oslo costume was not born until 1947.

When it was finally decided that Oslo would have a “special” dress / costume, what it should look like was important, as it was not based on old traditions, it is was crucial to consider what it would at it was to be composed without historical materials.
The great department store, Steen & Strøm, took the initiative to create a drakte  in connection with the 150-year anniversary of the department store in 1947. It was desired also to provide Oslo a costume for the 900-year anniversary in 1950. Head of the
Department of embroidery department at the time, Harriet Henriksen, composed the embroidery, and Ingeborg Solum the  pattern. The beautiful  embroidery on the skirt, on each side of the bodice and on the hat show all the  “Oslo midsummer flowers.”  Featured on the purse is St. Halvard, Oslo’s guardian angel.
The women’s costume is made of blue wool with a light gray wool  piece inserted at the bottom of the skirt (where most of the embroidery is).

The shape of the shirt was  blouse-like with a folded collar, placket front and with long, inserted  sleeves with cuffs.  The color has always been light gray. Today, the shirt a more traditional shirt shape with Chinese collar and slit at center front, and it is made in either cotton or linen.

Grey or white stocking are to be worn with this costume.
The Girl’s costume is almost an exact copy of the ladies’ costume. The difference, of course, is size, and that the bag does not have the silver, the little girl purse closes with gray satin cords.
Over the last few years there have been some small changes with the costume and  new accessories have been made.  Today you can buy a cape with embroidery, a  petticoat, umbrella, shoes, costume bags and a new shirt in linen with embroidery on the collar and cuffs, for the ladies costume was recently introduced.

You may also see a black version of the costume….

oslo mother and daughter

Oslo embroidery

Here is a close up of the wonderful embroidery of the wildflowers

Oslo man and woman

Now here is the real thing about the Oslodrakt….you are to have picked a bunad from where you family is from! When it was time for me to choose some many many years ago…when my Mother and Grandmother asked me what bunad I would like (both being from Oslo) I am sure they both assumed I would have wanted my grandmother to make one for me….but noooooo I did not choose this one. I must admit it is not one of my favorites…to say the least. I choose one of the more popular Hardanger as you would see on all the calendars at the time! But here are photos of my grandmother in the one she made for herself and then my mother inherited!

Nana in bunad

Hjordis Øiulfstad (my grandmother)

in her Oslodrakt, she got the kit from Steen & Strøm in 1947 and sewed all the embroidery (as well as the costume) herself


Mildred Stokes (my 93 year old Mom)

Mom is also from Olso and she is wearing the same bunad that was made in the late ’40’s…

  But it was not the choice for me… it is a gorgeous costume and one that shows the beautiful flowers of Norway as well as the guardian angel of Oslo

oslo pursepurse2

                                           photo from http://www.lailas .net                             just in case you want to make your own…..

Here is a photo of the new blouse



This may be the one for you….you can click on the link above and buy one from that website or go to the trouble that my dear sweet grandmother did and do all the handwork yourself…then you will have to order a kit!

Have fun deciding which is the bunad for you!

ps there is a new one for Oslo and we will talk about that one in another blog!!!!


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