On October 14, at two master classes in traditional Russian arts and crafts held in Polistovsky Reserve, three craftswomen taught the residents of the village of Zevlo the art of matting wool and making northern honey cakes called kozuli.
Elena Kondrashova and Yulia Orlova from St. Petersburg brought with them heaps of colored wool and demonstrated different techniques of working with it: wet and dry matting and creating beads, washcloths, toys, slippers, hot pads, brooches, earrings and key chains. All the participants in this master class had a chance to give matting a try and go home with a small souvenir made with their own hands.
Katya Belikova from Pskov conducted a master class in backing kozulya honey cakes, beginning with the preparation of the fragrant dark brown dough and ending with coloring the ready cakes with icing. During the lesson, Katya spoke about the sacral meaning of honey cakes and about their many forms and types. The participants put down all the secrets of the recipe for backing these ancient sweets and were also provided with templates of traditional honey cake molds. In the end, each participant created a unique painted honey cake. From now on, Christmas and New Year holidays in Zevlo will be accompanied by the aroma of cinnamon and cloves.
Both master classes turned out to be very fascinating and where enjoyed by all. The moderators were successful in creating an artistic and relaxed atmosphere. There was a lot of laughter, good vibes and interesting discoveries. It was decided to continue the practice of such master classes and training seminars. For example, according to the participants, they would be interested in studying, in greater detail, the various techniques and types of wool matting and wool and fabric coloring with natural dyes. At the end of the master classes, all the participants were issued respective certificates.
The master class was implemented under the support of the ENPI/East countries FLEG II
Program funded by the EU. For more details please see here.
The administration of the reserve extends its thanks to Natalya Milovidova, Katya Belikova,
Yelena Kondrashova and Yulia Orlova for organizing and conducting the master classes.