The book of written embroidery

In October, I had the pleasure of meeting the woman who wrote THE book on nagyírásos, Sinkó Kalló Katalin.  Her book, published in 1980, is a portfolio of hand-drawn patterns of Kalotaszeg írásos with a booklet of information on the development of the style and the variations between parts of the Kalotaszeg region.

It was such an honor to meet her, view her personal collection of textiles, costumes, ceramics, and painted furniture.  She showed Sara Meaker, my friend, TWT organizer, host, and translator (Thank you, Sara!) a long, beautiful tapestry she stitched to commemorate her parents.  We learned about the symbolism of embroidery colors and patterns and saw some designs that we hadn't seen before.  Red symbolizes youth, virility, and power, blue symbolizes maturity, and black commemorates those who have passed.  I was pleased to learn that dots represent stars.  Kati generously gave me a small piece she stitched based on a sunflower pattern, that we are holding in the picture below.

I look forward to my next trip, to meet with Kati again and learn more about her life and work!

Kalotaszegi nagyírásos by Sinkó Kalló Katalin, with a dedication and signature.

Kalotaszegi nagyírásos by Sinkó Kalló Katalin, with a dedication and signature.

Sinkó Kalló Katalin and me holding a piece she gave me based on a sunflower.

Sinkó Kalló Katalin and me holding a piece she gave me based on a sunflower.

Kati in her church in the photo at left and local women in traditional costume.

Kati in her church in the photo at left and local women in traditional costume.