Warmth and Color: Traditional Norwegian Coverlets

277 W. Main St.
Stoughton, WI 53589

This is a virtual presentation via Zoom. Please pre-register for the webinar:

Laurann Gilbertson, chief curator at the Vesterheim Museum in Decorah, Iowa, is giving this online presentation. She will speak about the colorful, wool coverlets, called åklær, that women wove in farm homes all across Norway. These coverlets were used as warm bed coverings and also for wall hangings on festive occasions. They played important roles during baptism, weddings, and funerals. They came to America with the immigrants and were an important reminder of their life in Norway. The presentation is illustrated with images of many of Vesterheim’s 140 coverlets as well as some from the Livsreise collection.

Laurann Gilbertson is a Des Moines native. She holds a BA in Anthropology and an MS in Textiles & Clothing, both from Iowa State University. She was Textile Curator at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in Decorah, Iowa, for 19 years and is now the Chief Curator there. Among her duties are overseeing the collection of more than 30,000 artifacts, creating exhibitions, and leading Textile Study Tours to Norway. We welcome her back to Livsreise to tell us about the history of this practical and decorative woven textile. 

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