National Doll - Croat, Dubrovnik, circa 1964-1997 Object Reg. No: SH 970321

National Doll produced to represent a Croat woman. Dolls are among the most universal toys found throughout the world and through history. Ornamental dolls can also be used to represent aspects of cultural traditions, such as dress.

Women's Croatian folk dress, has a number of basic components: a plain white dress or blouse (ko?ulja) and underskirt (skutici), other clothing and decorations are then added may include: an overdress or skirt (kotula), a decorative jacket (djaketa, paletun or koret), apron (ogrnjac or pregjaca), scarf (ubrsac), and a kerchief or shawl. The embroidery is very intricate and is usually red, white, blue, gold, or black. The national costume of Dubrovnik consists mainly of white, black, gold, and red colours. Both men and women wear vests rich with gold embroidery, and women also wear gold tassels decorating the front blouse.

This doll comes from a collection of approximately 150 dolls in an array of national and regional costumes which were collected by Edna Setford from 1964-1988. Her husband Clifford continued the collection until his death in 1997. The collection is the work of both Edna and Clifford as well as many friends and family who brought dolls home to Edna as gifts from overseas trips. The final doll arrived two days after Clifford's death. This doll was purchased in Dubrovnik in what was then Yugoslavia (now Croatia).

These dolls were purchased as souvenirs of particular countries and like many mass produced souvenirs they are often not accurate representations of a particular country or region, and may actually better reflect neighbouring counties or regions. This occurs because costumes are often stylised and simplified resulting dolls wearing generic costume elements which are common to many countries/regions. Often the fabrics and decorations used are selected to make the dolls cheap and easy to manufacture and aesthetically pleasing. This can result in the fabrics, colours and decorations of the doll's clothing having little or no reflection of the costume associated with a particular country or region they are meant to be representative of.
Female doll wearing a long pleated white skirt with a detailed embroidery in red around the hem. The doll wears a long sleeved white blouse with detailed embroidery in red around the cuffs and at the chest. She wears a black vest with gold detailing over the blouse and a black belt around the waist with a pink ribbon over the black belt. She has black hair which has been braided and pinned up and wears a round red hat on top of her head. She also wears a gold tassel around her neck.
Acquisition Information:
Donation from Eril Wangerek, 1997
Discipline: History

More information

Tagged with: souvenirs, cultural identity, dolls, national costumes, keepsakes, travel, cultural awareness
Themes this item is part of: Identity: Yours, Mine, Ours, Immigration Museum Exhibition, 2011-2021, Migration Collection, Clothing & Textiles Collection
Primary Classification: CULTURAL IDENTITY
Secondary Classification: Ethnicity - Clothing
Tertiary Classification: national dolls
User: Mr & Mrs Edna & Clifford Setford, Victoria, Australia, circa 1964-1997

Owners of this doll collection which was acquired during this period.
Place Depicted: Dubrovnik, Croatia

This doll is intended to represent a Croat woman. the gold tassel around her neck suggests she is intended to represent a woman from Dubrovnik

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