Changes, changes

However, moving to a new place was only one of the challenges that the family had to face. Economic changes which were taking place in Poland at the time affected the functioning of craft significantly.

‘In 1990 and 1991, when Poland as a country was undergoing transformation, we began to marvel at tags and clothes off the peg. Very soon many tailors and dressmakers ran out of work. Especially the young ones who had been trained by my parents or other masters in Poznan. They had to save themselves and find a new occupation. Otherwise, they would have no job at all. Workshops like the one ran by my parents did not suffer from the lack of work. However, our workshop had a reputation which my parents had worked for.’


Main photo - Changes, changes

Table of contents

What also changed in the 1990s was the approach to training craftsmen. The master-apprentice model, which had functioned for years, was slowly becoming a thing of the past. Education at the basic level was provided by vocational schools. However, these were not popular among young people.

‘In those times young people did not feel inclined to go to vocational schools. Everyone wanted to go to a secondary school and university. Neither were there many candidates for learning craft. The irony is that in today’s times people holding numerous degrees try their hands at craft. I value passion because without it, there is nothing. But you need this knowledge too, and it could be passed down by masters. But this won’t happen. The old masters are either aged or no longer with us.’