Story: Hawke’s Bay places

Scandinavian hair embroidery

Scandinavian hair embroidery

This unusual piece of folk art made from human hair is located in the Dannevirke Gallery of History. In the 19th century poor Scandinavian women used hair as a material for craft work. This piece was made in New Zealand. The letters, which are name initials, commemorate Scandinavian immigrants Bernt Johannesen and Elisabet Engebretsdatter and their children. The central cross is probably a Christian symbol, while the remainder of the decoration looks like trees, branches and leaves.

Courtesy of the Dannevirke Gallery of History

About this item

Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Janine Faulknor

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How to cite this page:

Kerryn Pollock, 'Hawke’s Bay places - Southern Hawke’s Bay', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/object/24224/scandinavian-hair-embroidery (accessed 31 May 2017)

Story by Kerryn Pollock, updated 30 Nov 2015