Traditional crafts are a significant part of the cultural heritage in Romania and four of them are recognized as UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage: Horezu pottery; the embroidery on the traditional Ia blouse; customs related to Mărțișor, the symbol of spring; and wall carpet craftsmanship. Other folk traditions are also very dear to the Romanian people, and to visitors!
Horezu enameled pottery is is one of the UNESCO-listed crafts. It is unique in its coloration and floral motives. It is most often decorated with elements such as stylized flowers, spirals, garlands or dots, and most importantly, the well-known Cocoşul de Hurez (the Hurez rooster) – the unique symbol of Horezu pottery. The artisans are always glad to share their passion with the visitors.
The art of making the Ia, the traditional Romanian blouse with embroidery on the shoulder (altiţă), is the pinnacle of women’s handicrafts. The white blouses are made of natural fibers (flax, cotton, hemp, or silk) and embellished with complex embroidered combinations of various natural and geometric motifs and ornamentation. The Ia is very proudly worn for traditional holidays and celebrations. It has been reinterpreted in many fashion shows.
Bucovina is an area known for the art of egg painting. Visitors are invited to follow the Painted Eggs Road, where they can see and learn about the art of transforming eggs into delicate, decorative treasures.
The northwestern region of Maramureș is famous for its woodwork, especially for the impressive wooden gates that embellish household entrances. The wooden churches are masterpieces of the art of wood carving; eight of them are listed as UNESCO World Heritage sites.
Traditional dances, carefully passed on from generation to generation, are practiced with great joy on holidays, weddings and other special occasions and feature in folkloric festivals. The Căluș dance and the lads’ dances are recognized as UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage.