Jewelry played a significant role in the costume of Yakut women.
Ornaments were worn over a fur coat or a camisole. The cloth jacket and fur coat on the fur tightly fitted the chest and back, extending from the waist downwards and reaching the floor. The sides of the joint converged in the middle of the chest. Fur coats and jackets were sewn from wide cloth stripes of red, green, yellow and black colors and were finished with bright embroidery, beads, silver and appliqué.Decorations yakut. In the clothes of the well-to-do strata of the population, more robust fabrics and brighter furnishings were used. The construction of clothes for the rich and poor was the same. Both types of outerwear combined with a high fur cap and metal ornaments were the national outfit of a 19th-century Yakut woman.
Restrained in color, massive metal ornaments in combination with bright, colorful and “static” clothes made up an integral composition, sustained in style. Yakut women wore a hryvnia-type necklace and head ornament with chains hanging on the chest and back, a series of pendant suspenders, wide bracelets, massive earrings, rings and belts with pendants made from personal items. A specific decoration of the Yakut costume was a silver chain of openwork plates, which with wide ribbons descended from a metal cervical hoop or from a head bandage made of tinsel. They created rich back and breast decorations. The central series of chains, flowing from the headband, framing the face and connecting on the chest with a large round plate, ended with patterned pendants interspersed with beads. The same complicated figured pendants completed series of chains that reclined on their backs. The round plate, symbolizing the sun, was richly decorated with engraved or black ornament. The chains of such decorations numbered two hundred, three hundred or more links and differed in the variety of the pattern, so that with the general arrangement for this type of decoration, the composite structure of the suspension never produced a monotonous impression.
Equally different were the pendants of neck necklaces such as hryvnia. Hryvnia as decorations remained with the Yakuts until the XX century. In the XIX century, the most common were the Yakut hryvnia of two types: lamellar and round in section. The ends of the plate-shaped grivnas usually did not close, but were bent in the form of loops and tightened together by straps. On the obverse side of the hoop a pattern was engraved. A rectangular plate with an engraved, sometimes openwork surface was attached to the front. Its upper edge was cut in a semicircle, in the shape of a hoop, chains attached to the bottom were fastened together with one another below. The hryvnia of another type was a cast, massive, round in section ring with a screw-like thread. To her hung long chains of openwork or engraved links, descending almost to the knees. The shape and pattern of the links are very diverse. The chains ended with a series of links, which, when walking, melodically rattled. All the pendants were often transferred to the chest, forming a solid metal chain mail. This decorative effect was further strengthened in the costume of girls who wore in combination with a mane neck necklace and head ornament with pendants. Hryvnia with a series of chains were the main and most characteristic, but not the only decoration of the rich Yakut woman.
An important accessory of the Yakut costume, both female and male, was a belt belt, trimmed with engraved plates. The central, larger plate ornament is especially rich. To the belt on both sides attached small items of everyday character: handbags, a numerator, a needle bar, knives, a cover, a flint. By the end of the XIX century, when the belts were replaced with sashes, these items turned into decorative elements of the costume trim. On the side boards of the outer clothing below the waist were sewn cords with strung large beads and silver tubules. They were hung with metal objects that lost their utilitarian purpose and were supplemented with purely decorative trinkets: bells, bells, weights.
In the XIX century, the Yakut women over a dress on wide long tracery chains wore large-sized silver crosses with engraving, decorated with numerous pendants. These crosses, made in the Yakut style and widely spread, were not only a religious symbol, but also a rather spectacular decorative decoration.
Everyday widespread ornaments were metal cast hanging earrings with pendants, following the pattern of Russians, who at the end of the 18th century replaced the Yakut bead earrings, as well as rings of very simple shape, worn on the ring fingers of both hands. The ends of the rings were not sealed in many cases, which allowed them to freely change their size. On both hands, they wore wide, arm-shaped bracelets in the form of cuffs. Bracelets – one of the main types of jewelry of Yakut women. The ends of the bracelets bent in different directions, which made it easy to fasten them, squeezing them with their free hand.
In the XVIII century for jewelry used copper, in the XIX – silver, mostly low-grade, imported or obtained from the remelting of Russian coins. From the technical and decorative methods of processing, casting, engraving, embossing, blackening, and notching with embossed coins were widely used.
Silver jewelry was created by local smiths. The blacksmith’s craft, which reached a high level of development, occupied an important place in the economy and culture. Metal processing – an old occupation of the Yakuts – in the middle of the XIX century reaches the highest degree of its development. Yakut masters created at this time a number of remarkable works of jewelry art.
In the expressiveness of Yakut jewelry, a significant place belongs to the form of jewelry, their architectonics and harmonious proportions. The whole, clear laconic forms of Yakut jewelry give the impression of strict restraint. This impression is achieved in no small part by the color of the products, based solely on the color of the metal and only occasionally animated by colored beads.
The composition of ornaments of Yakut jewelry is of significant artistic interest. Ornamentation of metal ornaments is based on the principles of symmetry. Ornament, having a complex curvilinear character (curls, waves, spirals, arcs, palmets, meander), densely covers the surface, outlined by linear frames and concentric circles. A specific and widespread element of the Yakut ornament is a two-horned lyre.
A great influence on the development of the forging and jewelry craft of the Yakuts was provided by the Russians. From the Russian Yakuts perceived some technical techniques, as well as decorative motifs, which were included in a rich assortment of original ornamental constructions. The artistic value of the Yakut metal jewelry consists in the finished constructive-expedient form and expressiveness of their ornamental decor.