Traditional Latvian craft fair switches to online format

The annual fair organized by the Latvian Ethnographic Open Air Museum was due to celebrate its 50th anniversary season this year, however, due to restrictions on gatherings, the fair was postponed to 2021. However in order to provide buyers from Latvia and abroad the opportunity to purchase goods of local craftsmen and home producers and sellers to market their products, a sales portal www.egadatirgus.lv has been created.

Gunta Velpa has been active in weaving for 20 years, trying to popularize one of the oldest types of crafts in Latvia. “I have set up my own company - Atspole, and so far the buyers have been mainly foreign tourists who have taken my works home as souvenirs from Latvia. I am glad that egadatirgus.lv has been created, which will serve as an additional way to get more customers in Latvia and also abroad.”

More than 130 craftsmen and home producers from all over Latvia have already registered on the platform www.egadatirgus.lv. Products are placed in 9 categories - ceramics; wood and birch bark, textiles; toys; metal; jewellery; leather; glass and food, and beverages. So far the widest selection is available for textiles, jewellery and wood products. Most sellers have applied from Riga and its surroundings (50%), Vidzeme (17%), Zemgale (12%), Latgale (11%), and (Kurzeme 10%). 

“Having realized that this year's big craftsmen festival cannot be held as usually, we still wanted to mark this year in the history of Latvian crafts as an important one, because caring for our people and the need to highlight, cherish local works has only grown. Craftsmen and home producers who have proven themselves will also take part in this online Fair. We are very happy about the great response from craftsmen and home producers and their interest in meeting buyers virtually. Thanks to them, Latvian crafts and home production traditions are kept alive, because only in this way we can preserve this important cultural heritage. Unlike many nations, we can be proud that we have really managed to preserve what many have already lost, said Kristīne Kūla, Deputy Director of the Open Air Museum.

Latvians abroad have already shown interest in egadatirgus.lv, with DPD Latvija delivering purchased products to buyers both in Latvia and elsewhere in Europe. The project was supported by Luminor bank.

 

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