Embroidery of traditional motifs and production of refined filigree works are both labour-intensive and rewarding. In Shkodra, a city located on the north-west of Albania, dozens of artisans have dedicated their lives to this craft.
One of them is the “craftswoman of eagle,” Ardjana Handraj, who is also one of the masters of embroidering the eagle, Albania’s flag symbol. Hundreds of Albanians in the country and abroad crave to have this symbol with them.
The eagle craftswoman says: “I have devoted my life to handknit the eagle and I have come to master it. I am so proud of this symbol. I take so much pride when my eagle handworks are craved for.”
Star Plus TV, a local television based in the northern city of Shkodra, recognized this artisan work as a potential for monetization by increasing their viewership, but also as a chance for promotion of the cultural heritage.
Ardi Hoti, the Director of Star Plus TV, filed a request with the Municipality of Shkodra asking them to provide information on the challenges confronting this community and to help them establish a market intended for them.
“In the course of these months we have followed Shkodra craftswomen's handiworks, which are too exquisite to hide or to not be promoted. They are a great value of our city and our cultural heritage, which must definitely be promoted,” concludes Hoti.
As a result of this a series of articles and news packages followed, focusing on the main challenges the artisans are facing, but also on the touristic potential. Star Plus TV seeks not only to help hundreds of artisans but also to boost the value of their handworks.
Star Plus TV, registered in 2010, is the only local media accepted on satellite platform DigitAlb. The outlet today has 16 full time and 9 part time employees.