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Handicrafts

The big tradition of the Majella handicrafts continues still today thanks to the goldsmiths, the lacemakers, the carvers, the stonecutters, the ceramists, the smiths and the weavers who work in the burgs of the Park.

The “Presentosa” is the famous jewel of the goldsmith’s tradition of the Park, which is revived thanks to the historical schools of Guardiagrele, Pescocostanzo and Sulmona, where the necklaces of Guardiagrele, the pins, the rings, the filigree pendants and the typical earrings of Pescocostanzo are created following old patterns and with a refined manufacture.

In the old workshops of Guardiagrele and Pescocostanzo are produced extraordinary works in wrought and forged iron, following the old tradition. Among the most beautiful works of the Park, the baroque railing of the Sacrament Chapel in the Santa Maria del Colle Collegiate Church in Pescocostanzo is worth a visit.

The Majella white stone, which at first was used to built the walls defending the Italic communities or to make columns and bases for the temples and the fora of the Roman Municipalities, today is used for statues, bas-reliefs and ornaments. The most important burgs for the manufacture of the stone are Pescocostanzo, San Valentino, Lettomanoppello, Manoppello and Pennapiedimonte.

The old ceramics survives just in Rapino, where the production has a popular feature, with very bright glazes and colours and with traditional patterns like the so-called “fioraccio” (a typical floral decoration), the little roses, the little cock, and the so-called decorations “a paese” (village patterns), “a quartiere” (patterns subdivided in small areas) and “a tovaglia” (patterns similar to the tablecloth ones).

Another tradition is the production of fabrics like blankets, wool cloths, linen and cotton towels. In Taranta Peligna the “taranta”, a wool cloth which has been used since the 16th century, is still weaved and another valuable textile production is the so-called “merletto a tombolo” (bobbin lace), even if today it is almost exclusive of Pescocostanzo, where it is revived thanks to a new school of the lace pillow.

In the past the woodworking was practised a lot by the shepherds to create objects for the work, the house and for the personal care, but now it is almost disappeared. In Pretoro there are the last “fusai” (spindle makers) who create the old objects for domestic activities (mortars, rolling pins), as well as chairs, pasta guitars, ladles, wooden spoons, curving forks and they carve frames, small statues and ornaments.     

Image of an art workshop
Image processing of iron
Image of white stone statues in the Majella
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