Openwork is also done between the seams of the front panel. The embroidery forms a band around the end of the sleeve, above the braid, and also is done up the center of the sleeve. Usually, as in this case, the motifs used are the same.
Poukamiso for special occasions would have more extensive embroidery.
In older examples, we find red, blue and green also used in the embroidery.
Over the chemise they wear a pleated wrap-around skirt called fustani. It has two hooks and overlaps and fastens on the side.
It is made of two loom widths of cloth sewn side by side. In Epiros white cross stitch is done on the hem, but in Thrace the decorations consist of sewn on ribbons and galloon. Here is a plain one as would be worn by somewhat older women.
After the ornament is applied, the pleats are sewn in, then the skirt is soaked in hot water and laid out flat in the sun to dry. After the basting is removed, the pleats are permanant. Then a waistband is attached.
Both the waistband and the hem are often decorated with cord and braid applique.
Younger women add rows of colored ribbon and metallic galloon.
Around the hips over this is wrapped another garment called zonee, which means belt. This is enlarged towards the bottom, so as to have somewhat of a cone shape. It is fastened on the side. In the photo above it is ornamented with triangles and zigzags, and has zigzag braid attached to the edge. Here are a couple more examples.
The waist is made of woven cloth, but the 'skirt' of the zonee is made of split-ply cords sewn together side by side into the triangles and other shapes and then sewn together like patchwork.
The apron, podia, is worn over the fustani but under the zonee. It is quadrangular in shape, being wider at the bottom. It does not wrap around the waist, but hangs lower, so that it is visible below the zonee. it has bands at the upper corners, the ends of which are attached to the waist.
The podia is ornamented with embroidery in the center, ribbons or galloons, and couched braid and cord around the edges. There is quite a variety of ornaments used. Darker more subtle designs are used by older women. Some of them need to be seen in bright daylight in order to be appreciated.
Podia for festivals were naturally more colorful.
A straight cut waist length vest called polkaki is worn over the chemise. The front hooks closed and is covered with the same kind of cording ornament as the zonee. Embroidery and galoons may also be added. The back is undecorated because it is usually covered with a second vest, the tzamandani, which hangs open. Here is a schematic and a few examples.
The Tzamandani is similar but longer, has gores set in on the sides and does not meet in front.
The woman in the center here is only wearing the polkaki.
Here you can clearly see the tzamandani over the polkaki.
The manikia are separate wool sleeves which are worn on the forearms. They were made of woven cloth decorated with cording.
Today they are sometimes knitted.
Colorful knitted stockings are worn. As in some other places in the Balkans, the stockings are made in two parts, Gabis, which cover the legs and may keep them warm when working barefoot, and Kaltsounia, which cover the feet and ankles.
Leather shoes, opanci or tsaroukhia, the greek shoes with pompoms may be worn with this costume.
The hair is usually braided, in different ways for women of different ages and life situations. A large kerchief, the Mantili is folded over and worn on the head. Much silver jewelry is worn, beginning with the large belt buckle, the Asmozunaro, which is the traditional gift of a groom to his bride. A silver ornament is pinned to the Mantili over the forehead.
On the Bulgarian side, this has become a large bib which is decorated with ribbons and glass baubles, and has become quite gaudy, apparently as a replacement for the silver jewelry.
The man's costume is rather typical for northern Greece. The foustanella is also worn.
Thank you for reading, I hope that you have found this to be interesting and informative.
Just a few more images of this costume.
The following two images are from the blog "Coffee And Paint Drips" ©DoraSislianThemelisArt/The Greek American Folklore Society, Astoria, NY Greek Independence Day Parade, NYC. My thanks to Dora Themelis.
Joyce Ronald Smith et al, 'Female Costume of the Sarakatsani', Brown University, 1985
Ioanna Papantoniou, 'Greek Costumes', Nafplion, 1981
Angeliki Hatzimichali, 'Greek Folk Costumes', Greece, Melissa, 1979