France | Brittany

Traditional costumes

Brittany boasts dozens of headdresses and traditional costumes, all of which vary according to region — like the bigoudène (tall bonnet), which is characteristic of Pont-L'Abbé. These garments relayed much information about their wearers: where they lived, how successful they were, their social status, and so on. Brittany’s distinct costumes developed largely after the French Revolution to assert the cultural difference of the Bretons in a country increasingly dominated by a centralized Republic . Breton women generally wore a cap, dress, apron and lace-trimmed embroidered shawl. Men, in turn, wore baggy knee breeches along with a hat, waistcoat and shirt.

[peinture #00474]
Bigouden Traditional Dress, 1900
France, Brittany, Finistère
Study, gouache, on Canson paper
Credit: Frédéric Back
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