Kihnu Museum Workshops

Kihnu museum's main mission is to keep ancient Kihnu traditions alive and to provide a strong support to the preservation and strengthening of Kihnu's cultural identity. All things interesting that can be discovered from the museum are:

- Kihnu woven belts

- Kihnu doll

- Pine bark boat

- Beaded necklaces

- Fish net knitting with netting needle

Workshops often last around one hour. Workshops need to be ordered in advance from muuseum@kihnu.ee

If group size is larger than 12 people it will be split into two groups and while one group is in the workshop, the other may visit the museum.

 

Kihnu Woven Braids - most popular workshop

Kihnu skirts have many different colours but they all have one thing in common - a woven, red fishtail braid. This is the simplest pattern to weave and these braids are also used for Kihnu shoes. This workshop will teach you how to weave the braids which are made from dyed, wool yarns.

A slightly more difficult braid is called "südametega pael", which means braid with hearts. Given this name because the final result looks like little hearts are woven into the pattern. This braid is often used to tie the skirt together when wearing and is known today as a popular friendship bracelet.

The third braid has many different uses and can be seen on aprons, bonnets, or is sometimes used for singing and tied on musical instruments. This braid's most important role though is during a Kihnu wedding where it is tied around handmade gifts for wedding guests.

The strongest braid is used for closing knitting bags or for tying up the skirt. This braid is good to weave with a partner.

During the workshop one can expect to weave a 50cm braid using 2 balls of yarn (90 cm).

Suitable for: All ages starting from elementary school (starting with the easiest fishtail braid), and is enjoyed by all, regardless of age or gender.

Group capacity: 12 people

Kihnu Baby Doll

If they couldn't get one from the toy store, then Kihnu children would make their own baby dolls with the help of their grandmother. Through this workshop, participants can make a cloth and yarn doll using simple techniques of cutting and sewing.

Suitable for: Because this is slightly more difficult than the braids it is suitable for ages 9 and up. Enjoyable for mother and child together.

Group capacity: 5-9 people.

Pine Bark Boat

One of the oldest activities on Kihnu is boat building. Through time, most Kihnu children have made small boats with their first boats being made of Pine bark. Using the bark, an awl, and a small knife, this workshop can teach you how to make your own boat to enjoy and float at home.

Suitable for: Ages 9 and up. Enjoyable for a father and child together.

Group capacity: up to 9 people.

Beaded Necklaces

Girls and women have always enjoyed decorating themselves, regardless of status. Throughout history, beads have been worn in Kihnu and are believed to hold protective powers. In this workshop, very young children can learn how to make necklaces using fabric and natural materials. Older children can use wooden beads. More complicated beaded necklaces called "kudrused" require skilled hands and therefore aren't suited for children under the age of 9. Kudrused are necklaces made with very small pearl beads strung together in different patterns. Every participant gets to take their necklace home from the workshop, but depending on the difficulty of the necklace some may not be able to finish in one hour.

Suitable for: Starting from age 4 (fabric necklace), adults can make the more complicated beaded necklace.

Group capacity: up to 12 people.

Fish net knitting using a netting needle

Fishing nets are knit with the help of a netting needle (known as "ui"). In order to catch different fish, one would use different nets with bigger or smaller holes depending on the size of the fish wanted. This workshop teaches how to make the knots needed to knit a fishnet and every participant is provided with a worksheet. If desired, netting needles can be purchased from the museum store.

Group capacity: Up to 12 people.