Alcobaça is owner of prestigious superbrands that have conquered the heart of consumers throughout the years. These brands are the living testimony of a deep-rooted local identity, hand-in-hand with the values of uniqueness, emotional attachment and differentiation potential.
The tissue “chita de Alcobaça” is a 100% cotton tissue that was brought from India by the Portuguese to Europe in the 15th century. The word "chita" comes from the hindu word "chint", meaning dot or stain.
This beautiful tissue became very famous for decor and clothing purposes in the 17th and 18th centuries. In fact, the Royal Factory of Linen and White Tissues of Alcobaça was founded on January 20th 1774, an evident sign of the importance of this tissue for local economy. It also became very popular in Brazil, where the first major chita factory was founded in 1872, in Minas Gerais.Chita de Alcobaça has the following characteristics: a vertical stripe with exotic birds, flowers, amphora, cornucopias and plenty of colour in each pattern, clearly presenting the Indo-European influences. It is an exclusive product of Portuguese textile industry.
You can buy this passionate tissue, which is so typically Portuguese, in the store Made In Alcobaça, located next to the Monastery of Alcobaça, UNESCO World Heritage site. Nowadays, this unique tissue is a true collector's item.
The origins of earthenware in Alcobaça get lost in time. This region has always been particularly rich in clay quarries, and even the Monks of Alcobaça mastered the art of clay modelling.
The so-called "Louça de Alcobaça" can be easily distinguished by its yellow, green, violet and red tones upon a predominantly blue background. This earthenware became increasingly popular not only in Europe, but also in America.
The blue earthenware of Alcobaça was highly influenced by the Coimbra-based ceramics school.
Blue was the dominant colour of Alcobaça regional earthenware and continues to be produced in some factories nowadays, however without the characteristic tones of the coal-fired kilns used for decades, since in the 1950s and 1960s they were replaced by others (electric and naphtha).
Throughout the 20th century, factories like Raul da Bernarda, Olaria de Alcobaça, Elias & Paiva or Vestal were the founders of a local brand by diversifying their production through the assimilation of national and international trends performed by outstanding masters of ceramics. Entrepreneurs, technicians and creatives contributed for a sustainable development of ceramics. Artistic ceramics of popular inspiration of the first half of the 20th century gave way to a contemporary decor ceramics with distinguishing factories with international recognition.