Koniakow, the 500-year-old village in a strongly conservative southwest part of Poland that produced Pope John Paul II, is nearly totally unreachable during wintertime, particularly heavy when it comes to snowfalls. For two centuries, the women have hooked thread in intricate crochet patterns to generate Christmas lingerie coveted by royalty across Europe. It was an art taught by mothers to daughters, done at home following the daily farming chores were finished, bringing reputation and income to the small local population.
Oval or round, made out of tremendous patience and skilled tablecloths reached tables of kings, aristocrats, bishops and all sorts of those with abundant levels of money to enjoy as well as a desire to live surrounded with splendor and beauty. Koniakow lace decorates tables in Vatican, Buckingham Palace, the White House and lots of other eminent places.
Then came G-strings. Last fall, some lace makers trying to generate money spun a racy twist towards the art, deciding that Sexy Underwear would sell much better than doilies. Since, the town of three,000 has been around an uproar, neighbor pitted against neighbor over lace thongs.
“Lace making is definitely a means for folks to earn money here,” says the 56-year-old mayor in the village, “But as the strings started, the community continues to be divided: about money, about morality, about tradition.”
Some traditional lace makers accuse the renegade lace makers of greed. Others say the thongs defile tradition, are indecent and promote se.x. “Our lace graces Polish altars, the workplace of our own president and this from the holy pope in Rome,” says the president of any local craft guild of lace makers that has been working with lace for six decades. “And suddenly, our lace is turning up – I don’t dare say where. How did the lace makers of Koniakow arrived at this?”
“Times are tough,” say their adversaries in the conflict, “handkerchiefs and tablecloths don’t sell well.” Lace making in Koniakow began within the 19th century when young women began creating caps of white lace to don after their weddings. Shortly after, say lace makers, women within the town started to weave tablecloths, altar ornaments, clergy robe collars and other ornaments yhnwgj adorn Polish religious and family occasions, in order to supplement their income. Like heirlooms, patterns and lace needles passed through generations.
During communist times, business was good. The city was maintained by the state in official craft guilds and subsidized being a nationally recognized art. Orders poured in from state-run stores, prominent officials wanting to utilize them to present as official gifts and clergy who used the lace in ceremonies and on their clothing.
Things changed when communism collapsed inside the late 1980s. The us government subsidies stopped and state-store orders dried up. Borders opened to influence and products from the West. People became poorer because they lost state jobs within the former planned-economy.
The scanty underwear some lace makers already were quietly making by themselves started stirring local debate in June 2004. The suddent shift from religious ornaments to Lace Sexy Lingerie was noted by major news sources worldwide. Magazines as reputable as The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune and the New York City Times covered the subject and around that period the thongs have began being available online. Each pair can be created to a customer’s specifications of color and design. Even though lingerie is certainly feminine, it stirs interest among men also, being unique and sophisticated romantic gift ideas.