(Music by Trio Tekke)
Lefkara lace is a style of cut-out embroidery that combines mercerized thread and linen for the home. These delicate geometric designs are inspired by the surrounding landscapes of Lefkara, Cyprus, resembling rivers, snails and tree branches. Maroulla Achilleos and Elenitsa Stavrinou are two of the last surviving women practicing this traditional lace-making technique, which has been known as Lefkaritika since its inception in the 15th century. The women of Lefkara, known as bloumárisses, traditionally gather in the narrow streets or courtyards to pass their time embroidering together. However, as life in the village catches up with the rapid pace of contemporary society, this handmade craft, recently nominated to UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Element collection, is being replaced by machine-made replicas imported from China and Greece to meet the demand of tourists.
Alana Kakoyiannis is a documentary filmmaker based in New York City and Nicosia, Cyprus. More of her work can be found at www.alanakakoyiannis.com.