Zmijanje embroidery is an embroidery technique practised in the Zmijanje villages in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The main characteristic is the use of a deep blue thread, vegetable dyed, to embroider improvised geometrical shapes. The blue thread on white background distinguishes it from other types of embroidery in the region, that mostly employ more different colours of the thread.

This craft was inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2014.



What is Zmijanje embroidery used for?

Zmijanje embroidery is traditionally made by women and performed together in a group setting. It is used to decorate female costumes and household items, including wedding dresses, scarves, garments and bed linen. Each embroiderer adapts and reinvents the required knowledge and skills as part of the process of transmission. The knowledge is conveyed orally and through practical work. Students learn by watching experienced embroiderers combine pre-determined elements into numerous variations, and through regular and continuous practice.

Where does Zmijanje embroidery come from?

Zmijanje embroidery is a craft from The Balkans, South-East Europe