Colourful woven pleated skirt brought to Melbourne by Selo Vitanovac, son of Vojislav Stojkovic, when he came to visit his father and his new wife and children in 1964. Selo brought the skirt along with some other items as a gift for his father and his family, it was at least 100 years old when Selo brought it out in 1964. It had been worn on special occasions in the former Yugoslavian Republic by Mr Stojkovic's relatives, and was again worn on special occasions in Australia by Mr Stojkovic's Australian daughter, Lily.

Dimka Stojkovic (nee Dimitrinka Nikolova Caraschobanova) was born in Bulgaria in 1919. After long and harrowing wartime experiences in German labour camps, she met her future husband Vojislav Stojkovic, a captured soldier from the former Yugoslavia, now Serbia. They ended up in the same refugee camp in West Germany, and were married there in 1947.

The couple migrated to Melbourne via Naples on the Protea in 1948. They went directly to Bonegilla Migrant Reception Centre in Albury, although they both quickly found work in Melbourne. In 1952 they had a daughter, Nada, and in 1956 another daughter, Lily. They purchased a house in Footscray in the 1950s and took in many boarders, mostly recently arrived migrants. Dimka died in 1998 and Vojislav in 1987.

Physical Description

Traditional Serbian skirt, loom-woven with red, black, yellow, green, orange, blue, purple and white wool. It is pleated from the waist band, and falls into a wide, long skirt. It closes at the back with a single metal clasp.


This skirt forms part of the Stojkovic family collection which represents the experiences of thousands of displaced persons and refugees from post World War II Europe and their efforts to survive both during the war and afterwards. It also illustrates the challenges faced by these migrants on arrival in Australia as they attempted to begin new lives often with limited English and little support. This skirt also reflects the continuation of cultural ties despite family separation and migration.

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