Category: Folk costumes

Sometimes there are magic.

© Text and photo by Laila Durán.

On my last journey to Norway, I went to the very south. Meeting with a long time friend who is running some of the larges bunad stores on Sørlandet.  She had gone through a lot of trouble trying to respond to my latest request for a photo shoot for the book Kronbruden (the Crown Bride). I wanted a “reisle”, the headdress used by the brides in the 17- and 1800s. The folk costumes with feathered headdresses are spectacular but I had only seen a bridal outfit like that in a museum exhibition.

- At the museum she was told that on a farm a few hours drive from there lived the owner of such a headdresses and it was kept by the family. When she called to ask about it she was invited to the homestead. – What she was shown was a treasure from the past. A complete bridal dress, in mint condition, one hundred and seventy years old …… AND the bride groom´s costume as well! These bridal costumes had been so well tended that in the bride´s pocket we found the bride´s braided hair, which according to tradition was cut off on her first day of marriage.

- Needless to say we had goosebumps all over and I am so very very thrilled and proud to say that we were allowed to carefully dress a bride, and once more her splendor will be shown, in a fairy tale setting, in my next book KRONBRUDEN.

This is one of the other brides from the book – a bride from Vest-Agder with her handsome groom on the sunny beach in Mandal.


Beautiful interiors and ladies made up in the style of the past.

 © Text and photo Laila Duran

When I first started to think about how to present the Norwegian embroidered bunads in the best way, my first thought was to make sure they were shot in the right settings. The bunads were often inspired by the embroidery on rural cloting but they were made, and at first mainly used, in the cities. This is why you will find some spectacular interiors in the new book “Broderte Bunader”. Work from famous artists and carpenters, such as Kinsarvik, are found in several museums and even some private homes. I have been very lucky to get access to these rooms, and sometimes even large apartments.

My second though was to give the models a look that would bring to mind the way the ladies were photographed at the beginning of the 20st century. Photography was new then. Many went with friends on week-end trips in their finest costume and everybody wanted to have their photo taken. The ladies with their hair all done up, and most of them in a shy pose, in front of the camera – I love that. For this reason you will find my models resembling in style the ladies from past times.


Book release on November 9th at Ájtte Sami Museum in Jokkmokk.

© Text and photo Laila Duran.

The book Scandinavia Folklore Vol III is printed and will be available from November 4th. On November 9th Ájtte Mountain- and Samimuseum in Jokkmokk is hosting the releaseparty. Entrance from 11.30 to 14.00.

Here are some of the spreads from the book. Like the other books in the series there are hundreds of photos of Norwegian, Swedish and Sami folk costumes and bunads.

Children fom Setesdal in Norway playing hide and seek.

Folk costumes from Nås in Swedish Dalecarlia.

South Samis dressed for a party midsummers night.

Man from Scania in south Sweden out on a date.

A spectacular bride. One of many in the third volume.


For those of you who live in Scandinavia and would like to preorder the book:

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