On cold winter days when we can't even get hot brandy, there are wool socks. They are a distinctive Serbian garment that reminds us of the warmth of our home and the deft hands of our grandmothers. And every time we call them, we cannot help but wonder how they are made. We bring you the secret of how Grandma Dushanka does it, one of the few keeper of the craft and tradition from the village of Rozanstvo near Zlatibor.
Grandma Dušanka is now 80 years old and with ease knits not only wool socks but also other woolen items. Next to woolen sweaters, she knits and vests, scarves and hats. As Gordana Melovic, Dusanka's daughter-in-law, told us, Grandma mostly knits socks for the needs of the household, but also for visitors to their household.
“Everyone from the family mostly we wear socks that Grandma wears. But we're not the only ones. Over time, our household guests started ordering, so we started selling them, ”says Gordana.
The Melovic household is located in the village of Rozanstvo on the slopes of Zlatibor Mountain and is involved in rural tourism. On his household, this family, which consists of 11 members from 4 generations, deals with agriculture, primarily in an organic way. In addition to orchards and vegetable gardens, they also store livestock.
Besides enjoying the fresh air and specialties of Serbian traditional cuisine, visitors can get acquainted with knitting skills for woolen socks which are the trademark of this household.
“Grandma knits wool socks from the age of 13, a the craft was passed on to her by her mom. And I can tell you that the process is not easy at all. For example, you need to know how it goes from one end to the other, and how to knit the heel on your socks, ”Gordana Melovic tells us.
In the spring when sheep are cut, the wool is washed and then washed and then Grandma knits. Wool socks are characterized by different motifs. And Grandma Dusanka weaves popular motives depending on what is being sought. Mostly they are famous folk patterns.
Another process for knitting socks is dyeing of wool, for which mostly natural colors are used. It's coming together quince leaf for green. If a brown color is used, then the nut is collected. The third color is from some grass that grows around their household, which is best known to be recognized by their grandmother.
As this is a craft that is passed down from generation to generation, Grandma would be succeeded by her daughter-in-law Gordan, who told us with a touch of fear that she had not yet committed to it in detail, but that at some point she would these five needles pass into her hands.
Granny Dushanka's advice to anyone who wants to try this craft is to take needles in her hands and to start knitting.
Interviewee: Gordana Melovic, Melovic household