Huelva craft tour

Crafts in the province of Huelva maintain their own particular differences from the rest of Andalusian crafts, as for example their essentially utilitarian features dicated by an agrarian and rural economy.

The charactarestic is specially present in all trades related with horses. There are workshops dotted al laround devoted to saddle making, shoes for the countryside and various types of bridles. All this is connected with the fresh popularity of pilgrimages - to which people go on horseback, and of riding. The centre for crafted shoes is in Valverde del Camino. The leather used is cowhide, the style is traditional and sturdy, normally used in the countryside, for riding or shooting. There are good saddlers at Almonte, Zalamea, Aroche and Huelva.

Workshops of Bollullos del Condado devote themselves to horse-drawn carriages, thus combining two trades: foging and cabinet-making.

Furniture is made mainly in three places: Valverde, Galaroza and Zalamea. The wood used is beech, though chestnut is also used frequently, and pine. rush-bottomed chairs sem to have become particularly popular in the last few years; the decorated ones are known as Sevillian chairs. They are made in Galarosa with popular wood and wet rushes, painted in bright colours, usually red or green, with flowers. Wicker continues to be used a lot in Sanlúcar de Guadiana and Huelva.

Popular pottery is still lively in traditional centres where the old Moorish techniques live alongside with innovated materials and design. Workshop tend to specialize, such is the case of Trigueros, where "pulperas" are made (small ewers with a large mouth, used by fishermen of Isla Cristina and other parts along the coast - "pulpo" means squid); Beas and La Palma del Condado specialize in architectural decorative motifs, in the shape of pineapple or simply a ball; there is naïf pottery at Aracena, flower pots and pitchers at La Palma and tiles are manufactured at Moguer, Cortegana and Nerva.

Metal workers flourish at Valverde del Camino making cowbells, as well as grilles and the metal parts related to riding, such as bits, stirrups ans spurs.

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