Cultural Fiesta Initiatives for Museums

Aztec Art in Romanian embroidery

by Doha

The vast majority of Aztec graphics represent deities, animals (related to the deities) or symbolize religious meanings. The Aztec writing consisted of glyphs representing a sound or a word or a letter. Aztecs were used to using symbology to express messages, whether on walls, codices, on religious artefacts or everyday life objects as bowls or clothes.

When I got to Romania, one of the things that caught my eye was the Aztec art, various geometrical symbols on the wooden doors and embroidered on the clothes.

But there was a symbol that caught my eye most, It was the symbol for the cross, start, tree of life and circle I noticed that in my home country in Morocco we have a similar symbols, and I started thinking; why they are similar? What is the significance of this symbols in Romania? And what does mean in Morocco? Why are those colours used? Does it exist in other countries? And what is different?

The Romanian peasant woman embroidered her clothes with her soul. Her hands only obeyed her heart. She prayed to God: “Cover my clothes with your Spirit, the secret of my soul”. All the symbols and geometric shapes of the blouses were designed to generate and direct the energy they represented. The embroidery on the front and sleeves carried this energy throughout the body, right down to the tips of the hands.

The significance of the cross, start and circle in Romania’s embroidery.

The cross represents the perfect balance: horizontally it allows humans to connect, and vertically it allows human to connect to God.

The embroidery of traditional costumes worn on sacred days followed a strict regional pattern and allowed a secret exchange known only to the people of the region. Sibiu used white and black graphic motifs, reflecting his Saxon heritage. In the South, the influence of the Ottoman Empire was felt in the choice of colors: red, dark brown, yellow mixed with gold and silver threads.

In Moldova, Voroneț Blue was widely used in combination with orange.

  1. the stars: the source of light, they guide us to the right path
  2. the circle: it represents the sun while being a symbol of renewal (what has been will again be, repetition of the seasons, death and rebirth of nature)
  3. the motif of the Tree of Life – still very much alive today in Romania – both ceramic utensils, portals and carpets: it is the very symbol of eternal life, of spiritual evolution.


The significance of the cross, start and circle, Tree of life in Moroccan’s embroidery

Moroccan Embroidered motifs often carry symbolic meaning. A widespread symbol is the tree of life, signifying birth, growth to maturity, death and rebirth. It can be shown in many forms, such as a deliberately stylised tree, sometimes flanked by pairs of birds or fruits such as pomegranates, or a vase of flowers.

The eight-point star as a symbol marks early human understanding of the intellegent order that underlies our universe. Today, it carries religous and mystical associations. Known as the khatim (seal of the prophets) in Islamic cultures.

Muslims have always used geometry and shapes to express themselves artistically. This is mostly because Islam generally looks down upon drawing, painting, or sculpting images of living creatures.

So, Muslims of the past used Arabic calligraphy and shapes to create beautiful Islamic designs. The 8-pointed star is a result of this.
















The meaning of previous symbols in other countries

Ukraine- Encryption looks like a modern QR code: each symbol hides a letter and a number that together create a unique charm pattern. Thereby, anyone can use such an embroidered alphabet and convey a message via ornaments. And all who learn how to use such an alphabet, will gain a new level of knowledge of the Ukrainian language.

I realised that embroidery has not only an aesthetic and decorative meaning, but also a symbolic and truly sacred character, and all its meaning varies from one culture to the next.

I believe that symbols are similar for various reasons:

  • The first reason is that because of the influence of another civilization and country on these countries (Aztec civilization, the Ottoman Empire…) it led to symbols of similitude.
  • Second, the similarity of human nature and the type of thought and nature around him, which led to the same outcome and artistic expression.



  2. -Authentic Aztec patters
  3. -Moroccan embroidery
  4. – معاني رموز مغربية
  5. -La longage secret de la romanie/ le temps de border
  6. -Ukranien-recieps/ encyptes-embroidery
Cultural Fiesta is a European Solidarity Corps’ project run by Team for Youth Association. The project is funded by the EU through the European Commision. The content of this article does not reflect the official opinion of the EU and its content is entirely the vison and statement of the author.