In a graceful 14th century convent in Perugia, you will find Giuditta Brozzetti. Here Marta Cucchia welcomes visitors to her studio-museum dedicated to hand-woven artistic textiles.
Marta’s great grandmother, Giuditta Brozzetti, founded the workshop in 1921 as part of a movement to protect the craft of weaving Umbrian textiles and to encourage and support women working on their looms in workshops and homes.
Weaving, embroidery, and other handmade textile crafts had traditionally been produced by women working in the home. With the revival of textile arts which spread throughout Europe at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century, came initiatives to assist women in attaining some degree of economic independence by receiving monies for work completed in their home or workshops.
In 1931, dedicated to making “faithful reproductions of Perugian tablecloths and of patterns copied from medieval and Renaissance frescoes, fabrics, and embroidery”, Giuditta founded her workshop employing 35 weavers and commissioned women working in nearby Perugia and the countryside.
Manual and pedal looms were used for domestic fabrics. Heddle looms adapted to Jacquard looms were used for more complex tablecloths as well as damask, clothing and decorative fabrics.
The Jacquard loom introduced weaving utilizing an apparatus with perforated cards facilitating the weaving of intricately figured and brocaded fabrics. It took three (3) months to transfer intricate patterns onto the cards. They have 200 patterns and no new patterns are created today.
Giuditta Brozzetti Laboratorio became a museum in 2007 and almost a century after it was founded, still uses the same 18th century looms and weaving techniques. It is also part of a Textile and Embroidery Museum Itinerary where Marta enthusiastically shares its history and legacy with regular tours.
Conserving and perpetuating this artisan tradition is time and labor intensive but Marta has inherited the same dedication and passion that first inspired her to follow in the footsteps of her mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
Visit Marta at www.brozzetti.com for more inspiration!