The 9th traditional clothing fashion show and the selection of the most beautiful Croatian woman in traditional national costume outside the Republic of Croatia, organized by the Stećak Association and co-organized by the Croatian Heritage Foundation, has ended. On July 8 in Tomislavgrad, Drina Jelena Dujmić from Canada, whose mother has Duvno roots, was declared the most beautiful, while the first runner-up was Darija Tomičić from Poland, and the second runner-up was Natalija Florencia-Jelicic from Argentina. Ana Gucić from Kosovo won the title of the most photogenic girl by collecting the largest number of Facebook votes so far.
But all the girls can be considered as winners! Twenty girls of Croatian roots from all over the world participated in this year’s fashion show, from representatives of Croatian emigrant communities from various European countries to representatives of Croatian communities from Europe and other continents — from North to South America — along with three representatives of Croats from Bosnia and Herzegovina.
At the opening ceremony, everyone was greeted by Ivan Tepeš, PhD, Deputy Director of the Croatian Heritage Foundation who put an emphasis on the importance of this program for connecting Croats from all over the world with the aim of promoting the wealth of Croatian traditional culture and providing support to the Croats of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially in strengthening and preserving national and cultural identity. Mayor of Tomislavgrad Municipality Ivan Buntić, Prime Minister of Herceg-Bosnia County Ivan Vukadin, candidate for Croatian member of the Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency Borjana Krišto and Dragan Čović, President of the Croatian National Assembly presented gifts to the award-winning girls.
The event has traditionally been held under the sponsorship of Dr. Dragan Čović, President of the Croatian National Assembly, the Central State Office for Croats Outside the Republic of Croatia, the Government of Herceg-Bosnia County and the Municipality of Tomislavgrad. This year, the Sinjska Alka Museum, City of Biograd, was also included in the program. There the girls had a professional photo shoot in their costumes and held a show in front of the Biograd audience and the host, Mayor Ivan Knez, and spent a day in the Kornati National Park and enjoyed the natural heritage of our beautiful homeland. They all said that this was the most amazing thing they had ever experienced and that they would like to visit again. Several of them from South America even expressed their desire to move and stay in Croatia. All we can say to that is: welcome!
Text and photo: Snježana Jurišić