Typical Canary costume

Origen the Typical Costume of La Orotava

The typical dress of La Orotava was created in the forties (40´s) of the XIX century. It was fabricated in Icod el Alto, because on the outskirts more looms, being the rest of the embroidery dress, thread work and madre in the Monteverde House. Nowadays it has been converted in a symbolic dress, not only in La Orotava and its area, if not also of all of the Island of Tenerife.

The dress of the Monteverde family was a different one of the time, as they choose to modify it, taking away some garments and adding others. Among them was eliminated the hood and headcart, and added the “remanga”, the apron and the buttoned boots and the transform the hat, the jerkin, the shirt, the skirt and the cape.

Traje familiar de la familia Monteverde

Familiar dress of the Monteverde Family

 

By consecuences of these changes, the new dress was more expensive and therefore, in reach of only the richer people of La Orotava. Given that the majority of the population used typical costumes more economical, resulted fundamental to return to make various changes in the dress, and then , was produced the boom and expansion of all of the modifications which had the dress from its beginings.

The typical costume of La Orotava is known commonly as “the red dress” being the tone most abundant and striking in itself, to differentiate it from the typical costume of Santa Cruz which is “the black dress”.

Garment of the Typical Costume of La Orotava

The garments that make up the original dress for women and girls are the following. They appear in order in which women or girls ought to place for its correct termination.

Detalle del delantal, la falda y justillo del Traje Típico de La Orotava

Details of the apron, the jerkin the skirtand of the typical dress of La orotava

  • Blouse. The blouse is white and og fine oolton. Although it can also be of linen but itt is a material more expensive because it is worked by hand. The blouse is trimmed with red ribbons in the neck, and in the sleeves, which have to be short above the elbows. It is important the thread work by han in the sleeves.
  • Underskirt. this skirt is of red colour and goes below the petticoat.
  • Petticoat. Is of a white colour and the bottom is strimmed with red ribbons and the strips are of crochet or embroidered.
  • Skirt. The skirt is coloured stripes with the bottom strimmed with yellow tape. It usually goes drawn up on the left side leaving the shite petticoat beneath to be seen. The cloth is of wool.
Detalle de la falda y las borlas del Trae típico de La Orotava

Details of the skirt and the tassels of the typical dress of La Orotava

  • Apron. Is white with thread work adornments in red and ribbons of the same colour. The strip has match the petticoat.
  • Tassels. Are woollen balls which are used to lift up the skirt. These are seven of different colours, one for each island of our Archipelago.
  • Jerkin. Is a form of top tight to the body over the blouse. Normally embroidered in colours with ears of corn, poppies and “caldos”. This top ajusts with some cords in the front.
  • Boots. The boots have to be of skin of a beige colour with some buttons on one side.
Maga vestida con el Traje Típico de La Orotava, detalle del sombrero, pañuelo y justillo

Maga dressed with the typical costome of La Orotava, details of the hat, headscarf and jerkin

  • Cape. The cape is worn on the right shoulder. This cape is of a green colour is finished trimmed with yellow tape.
  • Headscarf. The headscarf can be cotton or of satin. It is placed on the head and of a yellow colour.
  • Hat. it can be of Palm leaf (handicraft) or of straw (industrial).

 

In the Casa del Turista in front of the House of Balconies you can find the Boutique del mago, a newspace dedicated to the sale of typical costumes being artisan , made by hand by experts craftsmen  of the villa, like industrial which are much more economical.

To dress up in the typical costume in the best way to go to the traditional dance of Romeria. Consult our Romerias Guide so you dont miss it in you locality

The Palmero Cigar

Origen of the Palmero cigar

Since 1661 there are reports of growing tobacco in the Isla Bonita, being the first harvests in the National Park of La Caldera by 1730. Canarias was an obligatory stop for ships carrying goods to America, especially to the port of Havana.

Familia Palmera con las hojas de Tabaco - Foto de El Alisio
At that time many canaries left following the route opened by Christopher Columbus, up to the point that more than 120,000 inhabited the islands of the world the world’s largest producer of tobacco: Cuba.

They were granted a license to cultivate and produce it, and in the nineteenth century, these migrant families returned converted in tobacco masters, carrying between their luggage seeds of this plant that adapted easily to the fertility of our soils and the influence of the trade winds

Finca de Tabaco El Sitio, La Palma

Why is special the elaboracion of the Palmero cigar?

The supreme quality of pure palm, recognized worldwide, is because its production is full of simplicity, skill and ability accompanied by tradition, secrets and formulas whispered by ear from generation to generation.

The current seeds arrived from Cuba in the 40s of last century helping to subsist on their crop for many families during the post-war period. Women stood guard at night in the nursery and although the elaboration is predominantly male, women also knew the painstaking art of intermixing the best leaves, obtaining a larger production of cigars than the men.

Detalle del Puro Palmero en La Casa del Turista
It is essential to choose the most appropriate tobacco, it is not enough the quality of the tobacco it must be of exceptional quality. A league of tobacco-based best carefully selected and processed manually from beginning to end leaves artisanal experts believe. In this process it is as important the raw material as where it is stored, the rings…

Its coveted aroma gets to differentiate them from the Caribbean cigars, but to avoid being confused, the real cigars of La Palma carry an official seal of approval.

Puros palmeros en La Casa de Los Balcones

The Pleasure of a good smoker in your reach in The House of Balconies

Given the quality of the canaries cigars, tells the experts to be mouth to taste better, press them near to the ear to hear it crackle, light with a wooden match and above all, enjoy letting yourself be enveloped by the aroma engaging in a fruitful dialogue with the smoke.

In la Casa del Turista you can find the best cigars made with the palm technique.

Sources:

How to realize a canarian threadwork

Calado de La Casa de Los Balcones

Calado de La Casa de Los Balcones

Materials:

  • A small frame
  • A piece of cloth, at least 35 x 35 cms. (fabric must be very thin, linen)
  • A skein of yarn
  • A needle
  • A pair of scissors

Steps to Follow:

After placing the material in an appropriate frame, maintaining a work surface of at least 10 cm on each side, begin by pulling 6 threads, then leave 6 pull out 6 and leave 25.

We form the squares on the threads left by separating the threads by 5 in 5, putting the needle always in the center of the square.

We make an escapulario, stitch picking up the same 5 threads from around the square over the 6 threads left.

We finish with 4 spirit stiches on the 4 empty.

At the edge of the work will have a fine scallops.

Once completed, we will cut the scallop edge . After washing and ironing, we can enjoy an authentic canarian threadwork handkerchief.

The Canary Tea Pine

The Canary tea pine is a very common wood in the Canary traditions, its beauty and strength, but difficult to work, perfectly supports the weather. A clear example is La Casa de los Balcones, used in many of its installations, it has never been treated or painted and thus can appreciate the delicacy, neatness and the beautiful craftsmanship of master carpenters that worked it. It’s been four hundred years and even summarizes wood resin.

Patio central de La Casa de Los Balcones en La Orotava

central courtyard of  La Casa de Los Balcones en La Orotava

  • Name: Pine Tea pine
  • Also known as: tea Canary Island pine, loblolly pine, loblolly pine tea ,,
  • Color: Wood is provided heartwood. Dark brown and reddish caramel aspect.
  • Hometown: Canary Islands.
  • Properties: Very heavy. white pine and loblolly pine. Little nervous. Hard. Difficult to work because of its fragility. It isn´t impregnable as it is already impregnated with resin.
  • Applications: Woodworking. exterior carpentry: lattice windows, carpentry work view (does not require treatment for his incorruptible character).
  • Other information: Fibre is straight. tea timber is translucent in thin pieces (bottom thickness 1 cm).
Detalle del balcón de pino de tea en La Casa de Los Balcones

Detail of the tea pine balconie in La Casa de Los Balcones

The spiral staircase

Once through the imposing entrance to the Casa de los Balcones and crosses the hall into the courtyard, we find two wide corridors that form an “L” in which, among other peculiarities stands out, looking to the left side, the spiral staircase.

This original spiral staircase that from the courtyard communicates with the other two floors of the house, mainly known for its central axis, a single piece of robust tea wood, 11.10 meters high and uniform thickness of 16, 5cm. in diameter. Add to that a few meters buried in the ground to solidify the structure, we can get an idea of the great height of the ancient canaries tea pines.

Escalera de Caracol en La Casa de Los Balcones, La Orotava

Spiral staircase in La Casa de Los Balcones, La Orotava

The staircase, and in general all the woodwork of this house, represents a genuine display of this wood, difficult to carve but used by the best master carpenters of the time for its strength and beauty that remains over time. In this house, with its 380 years of history has never been painted or the wood treated and it continues oozing resin.

You reach the stairs from the courtyard and from one of the front rooms, and both have access doors with locks. There are 21 steps or rungs to climb to the second floor, with almost two full turns which is slightly overwhelming for those who up go it for the first time.

What´s more, this first section is enclosed with walls of red mud bricks and dead stone (volcanic stone or gravel) and finally whitewashed six small windows with wooden blinds for ventilation and clarity were maintained. At the end of this section, a minimum landing where again a door leads this time to a beautiful balcony.

Entrada al Museo por la escalera de caracol, en la Casa de Los Balcones

Entrance to the Museum through the Spiral Staircase, en la Casa de Los Balcones

The second flight, which leads to the third floor has the same characteristics as the first, both in number of steps and its peculiar almost two turns, but this time that which encloses the staircase is all lattice. At this point, we reach the balcony of the third floor, where the stairs end, but the wooden shaft of tea still stands out 1.60 meters above the last one.

¡We wait for you in La Orotava!

Canarian Sauces (Mojo Canario)

One of the star products of our Islands and attracts the attention of all visitors, are certainly without doubt the Mojos. The name “Mojo” is what we use to describe our typical oil-based sauces, vinegar and garlic, nowadays converted into a signal of fundamental identity in the Canarian cuisine.

Mojo verde y Mojo rojo

The origin of the mojos is lost in the memory of the islanders but the variety of recipes and ingredients used in its preparation are the result of the creativity of the island, linked to the fortunate geographical situation of the islands turned into meeting point of various cultures. The marine trade routes left in the hands of Canary farmers a treat variety of peppers, herbs, chili peppers which bove fruit and took root in its volcanic soils, helped by the bonanza of its variety of microclimates. It shouldn’t be left to pass the fact that Canaries is one of the regions with the most variety of potatoes, some of which have been lost even in their places of origen America.

Ingredientes Mojo Rojo - foto de Caja de Sabores

The great variety and popularity of the mojos sauces is due to its simple preparation as its peculiar taste. The real mojo should be prepared in a mortar or pestle allowing each ingredient retain its personality. Mainly they are characterized by preparing all the ingredients raw, which makes them retain all their vitamins and therefore very healthy. There is always an exception to the rule, so between the great variety of recipes for mojos we can find one of palmero origen (La palma) distinguished for using fried garlic.

Ingredientes Mojo Verde - foto de Mercado Calabajío

Popularly divided into red and green sauces, soft and spicy hot sauces, but exists so many as dishes to accompany them. Experts speak of traditional mojos, dressing, salmorejos, pickle, sauces. Red with peppers, with or without tomato; green parsley and cilantro, avocado can also be used… and we can continue with a huge range of recipes that could include cheese, almonds, fruits, hot peppers, all kinds of herbs and spices and even fruits. The great thing is that all retain the essence, but each person elaborates it their own way.

La ventita de la Casa de Los Balcones, 3er premio I Concurso fotografía

In any case the green mojos often accompany or fried or oiled fish and seafood, such as limpets. Red sauces for the strong and intense plates as pig´s meat, the jareas, sardines, rabbit or offal flavor dishes. But definitely the main and indispensable companion of the mojos are wrinkled potatoes. That exquisite Canarian potatoes, unpeeled and salted that can be served as a snack cover or as a garnish in all kinds of dishes. And it is clear that it should not be missing on a Canarian table where there are rich mojos, a good “chunk of bread “to soak”.

At the Casa de Los Balcones we have a beautiful winery, which is intended for the sale of agro-food products, such as the Mojos and other typical products of our land.

Fuentes:

Canarian knife

The Canarian Knife

The Canarian knife, valuable piece of craftsmanship while a useful tool, totally handmade, is characterized by a handle or end, beautiful and striking which makes it also very popular among collectors. This handle is worked in materials such as gold, silver, alpaca (copper, zinc and nickel), ivory, the ram’s horn (black and white blond) and ebony. Its blades, forged by a blacksmith are made of gold, silver, alpaca, Damascene steel, stainless steel and carbon steel (alloy of iron and carbon).

 

El Cuchillo Canario
On the origin and history of the Canary Islands knife several theories exist. Located chronologically by some in the thirteenth century, others say their presence in the Canary Islands does not go back beyond the mid-nineteenth century, associated with the early banana cultivation. Which is also known as “Naife”, from the English word “knife” would lead us to the theory that it was the British who brought it to the islands and yet the peculiar characteristics of the handle suggest a North African origin. Finally, after many studies, Don Alejandro Moreno and C. Marrero point out that – “the origin of the Canary Knife is in those peninsular territories where Arabs remained after the Reconquest finished. For further signs, I would say are focused or located in the regions of Toledo and Albacete, cities where, as was written by Martinez del Peral, making knives comes from the Moors, skilled artisans in cutting and treating metals “-.

Colección de cuchillos canarios en la Casa de Los Balcones, La Orotava
And in the Canary Islands, the knife took roots as an essential tool for the caltle breeder  and the farmer and between the first written references, we draw attention to the words of the English Olivia Stone, in 1885: “Islanders have at least a good habit. Wearly all men and boys carry knives, but as soon as the fight begins, throw them far away. If this practice was not well established, the passionate blood would lead to many terrible tragedies. ”

Campesino con Cuchillo Canario
Being motive of study for many, the Canarian knife can be classified by reference to the handle, in: Wooden handle knife, after Summit handle knife, knife after Coast handle knife and out of Flower handle Knife. Also, according to the length of the knife blade we find the Pastor, of 18 cm; Farm Knife or Platanero of 21 cm and Pitero knife, more than 23 cm. Finally, considering the materials used in their preparation they are divided into work knives and Jewel-Knives.

It has been deserving even of a monument to the Canarian knife, located at the end of Lomo Guillen (Guía of Gran Canaria), this city has been considered since time immemorial the quintessential land of knife.

Monumento
According Bel says, if you give a Canarian knife to someone, it is desirable that in exchange you receive a coin from the recipient, which is the only way to assure of peace between the two people.

Bibliografía:

  • Consideraciones Generales sobre el origen y procedencia del Cuchillo Canario, por Alejandro C. Moreno y Marrero.
  • “La huella de tus manos”, de Stavros Meletlidis.
  • Fotografás de Stavros Meletlidis.

How to wear The Fajín in your typical Canarian Costume

We are going to complete The Guide of Romerias 2015 with a series of videos that surely will help to many people.

In this occasion we show you two ways to how you can wear the fajín in your “Traje de Mago”. Our partner Juani of the Eladia Machado House, in La Orotava, show us the most traditional and the most known by everyone, in the moment to take dress with the Traje tipico.

Pay attention to the video.