A SUIT WORN FOR BEST
This suit is fairly new, made by Ødegård A.S. in 1991. Since 1985 this firm produces “bunad” and suits as a specialty. From talking to customers they realized that there was a need for a lighter and more user-friendly suit than the black “bunad”. This suit can be compared to the female “stakk” and it is important to stress that this is not a “bunad”. They used old patterns and old clothes and sought advice from Ragna Vetteren, Anna Myro and Paul Breiehagen during the development of “helgjikledu”. The initial result was a waistcoat, shirt and long or knee length trousers. They are in the process of developing a jacket similar to “fiskekjølkji”. The idea is that it should not be linked to a place or a valley as a “bunad” and can therefore be worn throughout “Østlandet” the eastern part of Norway. It is not quite right to call it “helgjikledu” which means “only for best” because it can be worn at any time. The waistcoat is made from “loden” which is a lighter cloth than “klede” or “vadmel”. Two different styles, one with a U-shaded front with a row of buttons in the middle, the second with a collar folded up and lapels folded and buttoned down. Both styles have half a belt and a buckle at the back. The shirt is tartan, red/green/white pattern and color. The same style of shirt was worn by Ambjørg Stølen, she was nearly 104 years old when she died. The collar of the shirt is folded up and it is buttoned all the way down. It is made from woven cotton, called “verkenstoff”, very strong and hardwearing. Underneath the shirt another shirt can be worn, this has a collar folded up but with no embroidery.
The knee length trousers are made from “loden” and made as a “lemmebrok”, as explained earlier. It has a loose fit and braces to keep it up. A “sluskehatt”, which is a hat with a larger more floppy rim than a normal “bunad” hat is worn. Watch, watch chain and knife can be used. This will be explained later.