Monday, February 26, 2007

Valenki: Their back!

Felt boots are thought to be developed by Northern and Central Eurasian peoples (Turkics) with the oldest known examples dating to the 4th century B.C. Valenki were found in a Pazyryk burial mound in the Altai Mountains in the south of Siberia . The original ugg boots were made by Khanty , an indigenous tribe, for the biting local frost. But this did not stop Empress Anna Ivanovna (1693 – 1740) and Catherine the Great from wearing their wore valenki with their most exquisite attire. The Russian felt boots are tipped to be the next fashion trend this winter in the Northern Hemisphere. French, German and Russian fashion houses have already snapped up orders ready for the fashion on slot. Glamorous boots embroidered in silk, beads and paste gems, or with lace, brocade and tapestry applications are ready to fly off the shelves. Handmade boot maker Lyudmila Chernikova sold out at the 16th Moscow Fashion Week , in 2006. The fashion range includes a glowing saffron, emerald green, deep claret or velvety purple, and made of the finest wool. This is a long way from the originals which were made from the roughest wool and available in gray, black and white. The best known of felt boot manufacturers, of Veliky Ustyug in European Russia's north, started diversifying its product range at the very start of the 21st century. Moscow has only one small factory, in Bitsa.

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