Is There Anything Vardos Don’t Make Cooler?

No matter the form, roulottes gitanes, gypsy caravans, vardos, sheep wagons or whatnot, you have to admit these are beautifully designed and decorated.  There is even a sort of modern take on the vardo with the revival of the teardrop trailer culture.

George's Vardo

vardo is a traditional horse-drawn wagon used by British Romani people (Gypsies). The design of the vardo included large wheels running outside the body of the van, which slopes outwards considerably towards the eaves.

File:Romanichal wagon.JPG

Originally Romanichalswould travel on foot, or with light, horse-drawn carts, typical of other Romani groups or would build “bender” tents – so called because they were made from supple branches which they bent inwards to support a waterproof covering. The British Romani tradition of the vardo is seen as a high cultural point of both artistic design and a masterpiece of woodcrafters art.

bowtop vardo

The Romani travellers in the (1920s) proudly clung to their decorative vardos, although the economics of their way of life was in upheaval due to the contraction in the horse-trading industry and the changes from their traditional crafts.[6] In the present day, Romanichals are more likely to live in caravans. However the tradition does survive and it is estimated that 1% of Romani travellers still live in the traditional horse drawn vardo.

Roulotte gitana


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