Stickerei Montafoner Tracht | © Vorarlberger Landestrachtenverband, Patrick Säly

Montafon Costume

Craftsmanship and an integral element of the culture and history of the valley

The Montafon costume is associated with an age-old tradition. The traditional garment of rural origin is still worn today. The women’s costume is mainly characterised by artisanal specialities, elaborate decorations and high-quality material in its different versions. Since the first main features of the women’s costume was probably developed in the 18th century, the costume has experienced some changes that have contributed towards the look today. Furthermore, other versions have developed in the last 100 years. Today, costume associations, craftsmen and private costume wearers ensure that this tradition continues to survive.

Festival costume

Best-known and most beautiful historical costume in the Montafon is the festival costume for women.

“Predominantly made of fine, black wool fabric, it is the many details that make this garment so precious,” says Ulrike Bitschnau from the regional costume association of Vorarlberg. The unusual embroidery is particularly noteworthy in this area. Several parts of the Montafon festival costume are embroidered with silk yarn purely by hand. Blossoms and flowers as well as loops wrapped with gold threads are motifs in the region. The coordinated embroidery can be found on the apron strings, the collar, the sleeves of the jacket (Glöggletschopa), the plait ties and the breast cloth. It takes an embroiderer 500 hours to complete the embroidery on the apron strings, the breast cloth and the collar.


The various headdresses are a particularly important element of the Montafon costume for women,

which would include the Schäppel [bridal crown], the Mäßli [black headdress], the Sanderhut [rimmed hat] and the Pelzkappa [fur hat]. The former is made from gold or silver wire and decorated with colourful glass stones, beads and silk flowers. The headdress reminiscent of a crown is worn by women until their wedding. The Mäßli felted from sheep’s wool is less sparkly but in no way less striking. The shape, and also the name, is derived from a grain measure. Since 2012, the Mäßli is not being produced again after decades of being forgotten. It is made from the wool of the Montafon Steinschaf. The Sanderhut has been part of the Montafon costume for around 100 years. It is a model of millinery in Sander in Schruns and is either made from black film or black straw. The underside of the brim is decorated with golden braids.

Men’s costume

Finally, a short overview of the Montafon men’s costume: In 1908, the men’s costume as it is worn today was reconstructed according to old patterns for the 60-year Kaiser jubilee of Franz Josef l. It consists of black loden cloth knee breeches, a white cotton shirt, a black loop around the neck, a red vest made of loden cloth, a jacket made of dark blue loden cloth and a top hat.

Production of the Montafon costume

Recommended reading

Costumes in the Montafon

BUCHER publishing house, publisher: regional costume association of Vorarlberg,
Research: Ulrike O. Bitschnau, Design: Wolfgang Rützler, hardcover, 128 pages, ISBN 978-3-99018-378-6, 24 EUR

Available in tourism offices

Costume Associations

Montafon Weather

St. Anton im Montafon
St. Gallenkirch-Gortipohl


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