Artisanal handicraft of the Nizhni Novgorod Region - heritage of generations and modern masters’ soul

There are workshops of the Nizhny Novgorod Region talents. Here talents and devotees of beauty come together, here experience and mastership of centuries are united with the bright idea and desire of modernity. Here, in the center of arts and crafts, lives the Nizhny Novgorod Region mood, its colours, emotions and skills. Decorative-applied art and arts & crafts of the Nizhny Novgorod Region are the great heritage of the whole Russia which is known far outside Russia also. All the exhibitions of arts & crafts show the Nizhny Novgorod Region craftsmen’s goods. 

Getting inspiration from the depths of the centuries, the Nizhni Novgorod Region masters represent such types of arts and crafts:

Balakhna lace (Balakhninskiy district, Balakhna). 
The history of local lace craft starts from the latest decades of the 17th century, its heyday has been from the end of the 18th century up to the end of the 19th century. Half of female population of Balakhna and adjacent villages have been dealing with lace-making. Local lace-makers have created their unique style -”balakhonskiy manner”. Its basis is compositions of flowers and leaves, pomegranates, bunches of grapes - the patterns, serving as the symbols of love, earthy heaven, happy family life. “Balakhonskaya rose” has become a kind of business card of the craftswomen. 
Museum: The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Balakhna, K. Marks street, 4 
Tel.: +7(83144) 6-16-62.

Varnavino bone carving (Varnavinskiy district, village Varnavino).
The basis of Varnavino bone carving is the peculiar artistic style, created on the basis of expressive ornaments of Nizhni Novgorod wood carving. Every product is being cut by a master from the beginning up to the end without using stamps and samples that contributes to the author’s individuality and creative approach while making every product.

Pottery craft (Bogorodskiy district, Bogorodsk).
Pottery craft in Bogorodsk exists from the beginning of the village Bogorodskoe foundation, from 1570. Hey-day of the craft is at the end of the 19th century - beginning of the 20th century, when Bogorodsk masters’ goods have become known to the biggest part of Russia. Bogorodsk potters have made big variety of clayware for every occasion: pots, little bowls, milk jugs, ewers, troughs, piggins, large pots, and even samovars (boiling tanks). 
Ceramics museum
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Bogorodsk, Lenina street, 222
Tel.: +7(83170) 2-15-57

Gorodets gold embroidery (Gorodets district, Gorodets).
Gorodets gold embroidery is one of the oldest and the most unique types of highly artistic people’s art in Russia. Clothes and kerchiefs, highly decorated with gold embroidery, have been obligatory elements of the Nizhni Novgorod Region largest merchant cities well-offs’ clothes, including the city Gorodets. Sparkling pattern has decorated festive costume that the family has been proud of, it has been kept with care and transferred by succession from mother to daughter as reliable capital that is never devalued.
Museum by the factory
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Gorodets, Respublikanskaya street, 86а
Tel.: +7(83161) 9-08-18.

Gorodets painting and wood carving (Gorodetskiy district, Gorodets).
The craft exists from the 19th century. One of the most widely-spread plots of painting - walks, tea-parties, famous Gorodets horse with horseman, peoples holidays.
The basis of Gorodets carving is the floral ornament with inclusion of various inscriptions and dates, as well as images of lions and fictitious beings (pharaohs). Painters use carving and incrustation with bog oak as well. Jewelry-boxes, small pictures, icon frames, gingerbread boards, small sculptures are being decorated with skillful carving at the enterprise.
Museum by the factory
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Gorodets, Naberezhnaya street, 61
Tel.: +7(83161) 9-85-37.

Gorodetskiy gingerbread (Gorodetskiy district, Gorodets).
Gingerbread has been the integral part of the traditional Russian living. Saxon historian and geographer Adam Olearius, having visited Nizhni Novgorod in 1636, wrote in his notes of the journey that he had been amazed with the local delicacy - honey gingerbread, skillfully baked by the residents of Gorodets on the bank of Volga. Up to 30 sorts of gingerbread have been baked here. Figures that have been cut on the gingerbread, have been very diverse. These are fantastic birds, beautiful fairy palaces, horsemen with swords, horses, geese, mail birds, fish and later steam ships and steam trains with charging cars.
Museum “Gorodetskiy gingerbread”
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Gorodets, Lenina street, 2a
Tel.: +7(83161) 9-13-01

Diveyevo toy (Diveyevo toy, Diveyevo village).
Art experts of the whole world recognised Diveyevo ceramics long time ago. Its appearance is connected with the revelation that has come to pilgrims of Diveyevo Convent. The pottery craft has died out in the Soviet years. And Diveyevo clay has been born for the second time only in the 90-ies. The forgotten craft has been revived at the Regional house of culture.
Museum of Diveyevo toy and ceramics
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Diveyevo village, Oktyabrskaya street, 43
Tel.: +7(83134) 4-24-49

Kazakovo filigree (Vachskiy district, Kazakovo village).
The first Kazakovo artel on making filigree goods was founded in 1939. Filigreed pattern is taken from the smooth or writhen into the filament copper wire. Then silver brazing alloy is put on the goods and then it is soldered. Further on, master is processing the goods with anodic silver 999,9. Painters started using gold plating method in recent years, they include natural stones, crystal glass, bones, enamelled brass in their picture.
Museum of Kazakovo enterprise
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Vachskiy district, Kazakovo village, Zavodskaya street,1.
Tel.: +7(920)0692413

Leather-dressing craft (Volodarskiy district, Reshetikha village).
This craft of the Nizhny Novgorod Governorate has begun to be developed in the second half of the 17th century and spread in many cities. At the present time the only enterprise of the region, dealing with artistic leather working, is “Renaissance”, specialised in making handiworks of genuine leather, using artistic processing.

Willow weaving, artistic processing of birch bark (Varnavinskiy district).
There have been several willow weaving centres at the territory of the Nizhni Novgorod Region. Mainly residents of villages have been dealing with willow weaving: they have made rattan furniture, decorations of interiors (woven frames for mirrors, lamp shades, pictures, trays, vases, baskets and etc.) of willow, osier-bed and bulrush.
Varnavinskiy historical-artistic museum
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Varnavino village, Prodotryadnikov street, 11a
Tel.: +7(83158) 3-60-90.

Nizhni Novgorod guipure (Chkalovskiy district, Chkalovsk, Katunki village).
The special type of embroidery “as per reaving”, that is as per large net, generated by means of reaving longitudinal and transversal threads of the cloth, known as “guipure” appeared at the end of the 19th century at the territory of contemporary Chkalovskiy district. This embroidery resembles lace because of its transparency and softness. The main element of the pattern, characteristic of “Nizhny Novgorod guipure”, are lozenges, “flowers”.
Exhibition hall of “Guipure”
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Chkalovsk, Belinskogo street, 65
Tel.: +7(83160) 4-14-91

Novinskaya wooden toy (Chkalovskiy district, Novinki village).
There were several centres on making wooden toys in the Nizhny Novgorod Region. Chkalovskiy is the earliest of them. Early toys of the end of the 18th century - beginning of the 19th century are push cars, forgers and etc. The toys have been made of asp and pine with a help of cutter and knife, combining carpenter's and carved parts with the lathe parts. The other type of the wooden toy - with the elements of genre appeared in the second half of the 19th century.
Museum of Novinskaya toy
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Chkalovskiy district, Novinki village, Shkolnaya street, 5
Tel.: +7(83160) 3-12-10

Knife craft (Pavlovskiy district, Pavlovo, Vorsma).
Metallic craft has appeared already from the 16th century in Pavlovskaya sloboda that is nowadays known as the city Pavlovo-on-Oka. Since the old days these places in Russia have been glorious for masters, making cold weapon, hunting knives, flatware. Pavlovo masters have taught their neighbours - they started making knives in Vorsma village. And such good ones! The handles have been trimmed with jasper, mother of pearl and bone. Narrations on how Vorsma goods have been assessed at the world-wide fairs are being passed from generation to generation: knife on one scale pan, gold coins on the other one.
Museum by the plant of folding knives “SARO”
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Pavlovskiy district, Vorsma, Zavodskaya street, 41a
Tel.: +7 (83171) 6-57-37

Polkhov-Maidanskaya painting (Voznesenskiy district, Voznesenskoe).
Making famous toys with the bright fanciful painting starts in the village Polkhovskiy Maidan of Voznesenskiy district. So-called “wild rose”, “briar” is considered to be the obligatory element for this painting. The plots are easily recognised as well: flowers, birds, animals, rural and urban landscapes. This painting generously decorates penny whistles, Easter eggs, mushrooms, salt cellars, drinking cups, deliveries and, of course, matryoshkas.
Voznesenskiy Museum of Local History
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Voznesenskoe, Sovetskaya street,14
Tel.: +7(83178) 6-11-62

Stone carving (Buturlinskiy district, Bornukovo village).
History of stone carving craft is rooted in the remote past and it is inextricably connected with mysterious “marble” cave, located on the bank of river Piyana in Bornukovo village of Buturlinskiy district. This cave has been historically glorious for its ornamental stone - anhydrite or “Nizhni Novgorod marble” as it has been called. The hey-day of Bornukovo stone carving art goes back to the 30-ies of the 20th century when factory of artistic stone carving goods “Bornukovo cave” has been created.
Museum by the stone carving factory
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Buturlinskiy district, Bornukovo village, Tsentralnaya street, 16
Tel.: +7(83172) 5-56-59

Semenov painting (Urban district Semenovskiy, Semenov).
One of the Russian symbols is traditional Russian matryoshka - bright festive beauty with pink cheeks and ruby-coloured roses on the apron. Ancient craft of making wooden toy with painting has appeared on the talented Nizhni Novgorod land at the beginning of the 20th century.

Glass-blowing production (Nizhni Novgorod).
History of Nizhni Novgorod factory of glass fir-tree decorations “Ariel” has started from 1992 with small artistic workshops, where skilled Nizhni Novgorod painters manually painted glass fir-tree decorations. Their own glass-blowing shop was opened at the factory in 1996. Specialists of the factory continue and develop traditions of glass-blowing craft up to now, preserving tradition of manual making of fir-tree decoration by means of blowing and manual artistic painting. Goods of different shapes are being made at the factory: balls, bells, candlesticks, medallions, icicles, tops and various formed toys.
Museum of fir-tree decoration
Nizhni Novgorod, Zhirokombinata road, 8 a, B
Tel.: +7(831) 410-02-36

Embroidery production (Chkalovskiy district, Katunki village).
Embroidery production in Katunki has been widely developed from the 19th century. The essence of this craft is that threads are being pulled out from the cloth as per the known pattern of threads, thus forming through picture on the cloth and then thread overwrapping. Threads can be chosen as per the color of the cloth or be in contrast with it. Either flax linen or cotton warp linen is taken.
Exhibition hall
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Chkalovskiy district, Katunki village, Naberezhnaya street, 4
Tel.: +7(902) 687-47-448

Figured-heddle weaving (Urban district Shakhunia).
Ancient type of craft, people’s traditions have revived in 1971 in the north of the Nizhni Novgorod Region in Shakhunia at the embroidery factory. Peasant women have decorated mats, clothes, coverlets, tablecloths, tabletops, towels with homespun patterns. Linen, wool and cotton have been materials for weaving. Nizhni Novgorod weaving has been notable for patterns of geometrical ornament and delicacy of colouration.

Khokhloma painting (Urban district Semenovskiy, Semenov; Koverninskiy district, Semino village).
Golden Khokhloma is one of the oldest authentic Russian crafts, forming living and lifestyle of generations throughout the centuries and being the integral part of Russian culture. Peculiarity of Khokhloma craft is making gold-plated wooden cookware without using precious metal and peculiar vegetative-grass painting. Flamy firebird, decorated with bright flowers, has become the symbol of Khokhloma craft.
Exhibition hall by “Khokhloma painting”
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, Semenov, Chkalova street, 18
Tel.: +7(83162) 5-57-57

Artistic embroidery (Nizhni Novgorod).
Artistic embroidery is one of the well-known Nizhni Novgorod crafts. It has obtained development in Nizhni Novgorod in 1933 with creation of embroidery factory “Junona”. Keeping the ancient traditions, even nowadays factory is specialised in development and making women's clothes with elements of artistic embroidery.

Metal art (Pavlovskiy district, Pavlovo; Vorsma).
The Nizhni Novgorod Region is famous for metalworking traditions since ancient times. The ancient city Pavlovo, located on the bank of the river Oka, has been and remains one of the centres of forging and knife crafts. The centuries-old experience in metalworking, transferred from generation to generation, is demonstrated in making tourist, hunting knives, flatwares and etc. Beautiful combination of design with the best traditions in metal art gives unique look to the goods.
Museum of Pavlovskiy plant
The Nizhni Novgorod Region, city Pavlovo, Mayakovskogo street, 77
Tel.: +7(83171) 2-22-14

Museum of arts and crafts history of the Nizhni Novgorod Region
Museum of arts and crafts is considered as The Palace of the Russian ancient culture. One can get to see traditional furniture and other wooden stuff. This museum not only represents the best of arts and crafts works but also the mastery of Russian ancestors.
Nizhni Novgorod, Bolshaya Pokrovskaya street, 43
Tel.: +7 (831) 422-10-83