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Crafty Homemaking

Embroidery has evolved over the centuries in a craft of unparalleled beauty and skill. The art of embroidery is a century old tradition of Cyprus so familiarize yourselves with it and you will not regret it! The traditions, stories and soul of the island find their expression on the works of embroidery, giving you the feeling that you can actually read them on a piece of cloth!

crafty homemaking letymbou
Letymbou,Sofias House

In the cobbled streets of the villages in the afternoon, skillful hands are redesigning on linen fabric, intricate patterns taken from ancient vases, while elsewhere they imitate colorful designs aroused by the dresses of Regina. Whether it is the delicate “Pipilla” or the famous “Lefkaritika” you will be mesmerized by the skillfulness and craftsmanship of these works. Their patterns have also inspired other crafts such as metalworking.

Baking traditions are one of Cyprus’ ancient treasures. This can be seen in local bakeries, visiting ancient watermills or windmills and walking around the Museum of Bread in Lemesos. Eubulus (400-350 BC), an Athenian Middle Comedy poet, writes: “Hard it is to see Cyprian loaves and ride by; like a magnet they draw the hungry to them”. Indeed, no one can resist to a hot freshly bread baked in a wood fired oven with either halloumi cheese or olives and tomato. Cyprus bread is the sourdough starter that replaces the yeast and the round scoring which characterizes its shape.

Cyprus baking is not just bread. Try koulouri (finger bread) which is crisp on the outside and soft on the inside, Glystarka, a kind of grid-like crusty, sesame rusk, Arkatena, a circular bread made with leaven using the foam produced from chickpea fermentation and many other pies like tahini pie, olive pie and halloumi pie. During Christmas and Easter, Cyprus women bake the traditional festive recipes. Watch them in their courtyards kneading the dough to make stavrokouloura (round shape bread with a cross in the middle), gennopittes (their common characteristic is the mark of the cross and decorated with raisins or motifs from nature and everyday life), christopsoma (Christ’s bread), avkotes (a basket shape bun or bagel decorated with a colored egg), daktylies (milky bread) and of course flaounes (sweet or sour cheese pies).

Get enchanted by the embroidery and taste the baking traditions of Cyprus by following the dedicated routes in the Heartland of Cyprus: Bake for the Soul or Weaving of Dreams are lifetime journeys and collectible experiences.

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