If you need a peaceful, small place to rest your soul in Croatia, I've found the perfect place for you. In the Sisak-Moslavak County, less than an hour drive south of Zagreb, and only twenty minutes ride from Sisak (via D37), you can find Petrinja, home of old crafts, music and art. Explore it. Feel it. It will be worth your time.
First of all, at the city entrance, you can see a big ceramic vessel, a useful item from the past times for carrying wine and water. This same vessel you will see in the whole city, as it is one of the traditional souvenirs of Petrinja. The reason for it is a famous and very good quality clay from the land around the city. The pottery craft is an important part of the culture of Petrinja region from the middle of the 19th century. At that time, in Petrinja lived almost 100 pottery craftsmen.
A monument to Stjepan Radić was made out of clay by sculptor Mila Wood. This monument was first baked and then covered with bronze, and you can see at in the main city square. Today, you can visit Stucka workshop, and its owner Matej Stanešić will show you the beauty of old craft that is maintained until modern days.
Women in Petrinja own very interesting and old skills. They know how to handmake woven clothes. You can create a very vivid picture of old times of the whole Balkans just by looking at this wonderful folk costumes, decorated with flowers and folklore ornaments. Women in Petrinja hold this tradition and keep it from forgetting. Pokupska Paculjica was the first protected domestic work by the State Intellectual Property Office. Woven clothes, alongside with souvenirs from the Petrinja region are decorated with flowers together with other ornaments from nature, and all this is made in a specific weaving style called "Petrinjki". Paculjica is a decorative head covering made of silk. Back in a day, it was used to distinguish the girl from a married woman. The woman would wear it for the first time on her wedding day after she takes off the wedding dress and puts on the folklore dress. Today, you can buy it as a souvenir.
When it comes to the music, in 1808, in Petrinja was founded the City Wind Orchestra. It was one of the oldest in the whole of Europe. Orchestra Big Band Petrinja was founded in 2000, and since 2012, the children's orchestra also operates. Under the title Big Band Petrinja & Friends, they promoted their first sound carrier in 2006.
Find inspiration in wonderful Petrinja, home of old crafts, music and art. Maybe you will find a hidden part of your soul.
Cover Photo © credits to iStockphoto/karleo
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