Maria Cristea: Creating a national costume is a big responsibility

As a director of the House of Folk Costumes "Casa Cristea", she designed clothes for the most prominent men of culture in the Republic of Moldova

Perhaps expression ”genius artist” was invented to encompass the distinctive personality of our heroine named Maria Cristea. Officially, with an experience in the art of embroidery for more than 30 years and de facto – an entire life experience, Mrs. Maria Cristea having promoted national values, won the well deserved Labour Glory order. She knows all types of embroidery and how to carry out a genuine national costume. As a director of the House of Folk Costumes  "Casa Cristea", she designed clothes for the most prominent men of culture in the Republic of Moldova, while her creations could definitely be found all over the world.


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First name, last name: Maria Cristea
Date of birth: 14.12.1955
Place of birth: Ulmul, Lapusna
Education: Moldova State University, Faculty of Mathematics and Cybernetics
Domain of activity: Social Affairs
Achievements:  Craftsmen, founder of House of National Port ”Casa Cristea”


  • Her loyal customers have always been folk dance groups, national orchestras, singers

I mean all the people involved in the cultivation of our traditions through songs and dance, as well as people of art of different institutions. In recent years as the fashion of wearing costumes embroidered with national elements came back to life, many want a costume designed by her to simply wear it. These people happen to be young brides, babies and elderly people who honor national symbols present on their clothes.

There is a problem concerning kitsch costumes who are made with invented and unorganized ornaments that actually lead people into error. One such piece of clothing must not be named „ie”, it is simply an embroidered blouse.


  • When I started working I wrote down that I do not want to make a whole country where our national costume

It would be ridiculous to see a people in national costumes and boots walking on the streets because we're not going back into the past. Having some national elements embroidered on your clothes is a beautiful thing, though. It is an honor for our traditions and, it is in fact - self esteem. In order to succeed it is important to respect yourself and you actually respect yourself when you speak your language, you dress up in a national costume and love your nation.


  • Ia” is a very interesting piece of clothing

Who thinks he knows everything about national costumes having simply made an ”ia” along with some national symbols makes a great error. We have a lot of embroidery styles that are part of our history and really worth discovering.

I have made embroideries all this time because I have lived in a house full of items which were embroidered.


  • Casa Cristea” is a fashion house who accepts anyone’s orders

Rarely do any singers who had their costumes created choose other designers rather than us. Not only did I have their clothes created, but I also did create their own style. All professional orchestras and folklore artists are dressed in our costumes.


  • We cannot accept any embroidery on an ia”

It is a great responsibility we assume ourselves while creating them. The Ministry of Culture must intervene because there are kitsch costumes produced which might get people confused. There are certain rules that must be observed through tradition and history, and when there is no common sense, the law must respond to these violations.


  • Sometimes I simply close my eyes and see a model of ia”

When I imagine a new model of ”ia”, I just burn with desire to start working on the project as soon as possible. When I embroider something I do not work, I simply relax. Sometimes there comes a customer who is so obsessed with the idea of having an ”ia” that I myself get to the point where I wish I had your own one.


  • Values and traditions can be cultivated through generations

We've got a future as long as we have families who educate their children in the spirit of our traditions and love for our nation.