Centro Regional de Apoio ao Artesanato

The website of the Regional Centre for Handicrafts (CRAA) aims, in its essence, to promote and divulge the certified handicraft products.
The Regional Centre for Handicrafts is an executive service of the Vice-Presidency of the Regional Government of the Azores, which is responsible for the implementation of regional policy in the areas of development and appreciation of traditional products, including the regional handicrafts and handicraft production units, professional training and the coordination of multifunctional initiatives with development in the local environment.
CRAA develops a consistent and diverse annual plan, acting on four areas that are considered fundamental: Research/Certification, Training, Artisan Support and Promotion. The development of these areas involves the certification of products, editing publications, organizing exhibitions, promoting workshops, workshops and training activities, providing support to the artisans, namely through the incentive system.

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The training in handicraft responds to the needs of the market, contributing at the same time to the training of a new generation of artisans endowed with technical and scientific knowledge always linked to the traditional knowledge. The training is a commitment to the revitalization of the traditional crafts, each one characteristic of each island and in the re-creation of more contemporary products, through the project Hora do Ofício (Craft Hour).


CRAA develops a diversified annual plan, to be able to had value to the handicraft products of the Azores, with the goal of commercialization and promotion of the excellent craftsmanship in the region, participating and organizing several fairs and markets, such as the Handicraft Shows – M.ART’s, the Urban Market of Handicrafts – MUA, the AçorExpo, the Market of Azorean Sweets – Dias Doces and the Handicraft Festival of the Azores – PRENDA.


Artisan is the worker who carries out a manual labor, on his own account or on behalf of another person, inserted in a recognized handicraft productive unit, which requires the mastery of the knowledge and techniques inherent to the activity in question and accurate aesthetic sense and manual skill. The recognition of the artisan status is done through the attribution of a title called “carta de artesão” (artisan’s letter).


The collective brand of origin “Artesanato dos Açores”, implemented in 1998, intends, with the valorization of the products it integrates, a more effective distinction, dissemination and commercialization, especially in the foreign market. The projection of the brand is also based on the responsibility of the artisans, as the most interested in the distinction of their products in the market, with the acquirement of a seal of certification.


Wheat Straw Embroidery

As if they were gold threads, wheat or rye straw are crafted by the genius of the women of Faial over white or black tulle. The predominant decorative element is the ear of the wheat, although other vegetal elements are part of the exquisite pieces connected to women’s fashion, such as ceremony dresses, veils, kerchiefs […]

White/Raw Embroidery

White and clean, Terceira’s embroidery reveals the influence of the island of Madeira and the English embroidery favoring Richelieu and full stitches. Towels, sheets, pillowcases, bedspreads and doilies are some of the pieces that were part of the brides trousseau of Terceira´s elite and now are the main offer of the Azorean textile market with […]

“Matiz” Embroidery

The typical embroidery of São Miguel is characterized by two shades of blue on linen in “matiz” stitch. Smooth and harmonious, it reflects the rare beauty of the islands. Botanical and countryside themes such as clovers, “gavinas”, brambles, ferns, carnations and intertwined hearts predominate. Since the 30’s of the 20th century, embroidery won the domestic […]


The most admirable lace of the archipelago are made in Pico and Faial. They are of great quality and with recognized artistic and ethnographic value. Its basic elements are the “rosettes”, with various forms and names. It is in the harmony which the rosettes are linked together, with a variety of stitches, strictly numbered, that […]


Vila Franca, in S. Miguel, and Angra do Heroísmo, in Terceira, are the production centers that continue the traditional pottery of the Azores. The “talhão” as an important reservoir of water or cereals in the past and the “talha” or “bilha” (clay jugs) utilized in the transportation of liquids are now much appreciated pieces in […]


A indústria cerâmica da Lagoa, que se afirma ao longo do século XIX e da qual não se podem excluir ligações à indústria cerâmica do Norte de Portugal, deu início à produção de faiança nos Açores com o fabrico em série de peças pintadas com flores e outros motivos […]


The local production of tile assumes some importance only from the second half of the 19th century, when it was founded the first ceramic factories in the islands of S. Miguel and Terceira. These local productions tiles lined the façades of urban buildings and walls of chapels in storied compositions, in cobalt blue tones, or […]

Figurative Ceramic

The sculpture of typical customs produced in the ceramic factories in the city of Lagoa, in the island of São Miguel, was not intended only for tourism promotion of the islands of the Azores, but also linked itself to the Christmas tradition of the “assembling of the Christmas crib”, promoting the development of the current […]


Weaving is one of the first and oldest traditional industries of the archipelago, as well as an effective response to the limitations caused by insularity. The art of loom, in wool and linen or cotton, is thorough, time-consuming and demanding. The beautiful bedspreads, quilts, patchwork carpets, regional attires, blankets, straps or doilies with geometric designs […]

Regional Sweets

“Queijadas” of Vila Franca

Of Secular tradition, “queijadas da Vila”, a sweet originary in the St. Andrew’s Convent, the first in the Azores of the 1st Rule of St. Claire, built in 1533. In the late 18th century, nuns of Dutch and Spanish origin came to the “convento da Vila”, who made the “queijadas” according to a centuries-old recipe. […]

Dona Amelia’s Cakes

It is a dark corn cake, covered with powdered sugar and with an intense aroma of cinnamon and honey cane, typical of the island of Terceira. It got its name during the visit of the kings of Portugal, D. Carlos and D. Amélia to Terceira in 1901. For what is known, it was offered to […]

“Queijadas” of Graciosa

It is a regional sweet from Graciosa, famous throughout the archipelago. Of delicate flavor, star-shaped, the outside dough presents itself as thin and crispy and hosts a filling of eggs and milk. For some years this delicacy was exclusive to the homes of Graciosa, when it was still known as “covilhete de leite”, a must […]

“Espécies” of São Jorge

A regional sweet from the island of São Jorge, is presented as small ring-shaped cookie with host dough, struck across the top, leaving a glimpse of brownish filling. Previously, the “espécies” were named “bichos doces” (sweet animals), in which the filling was made with homemade bread, roasted and ground in “atafonas” (a mill moved by […]

Biscoitos de Orelha

From an historical and geographical point of view, the production of “Biscoitos de Orelha” is confined to Santa Maria, making it a reference product of the “Mariense” cuisine. This biscuit was an usual presence in “Marienses” homes, on festive occasions, such as in the pig slaughter, weddings, festivities of the Holy Spirit and Christmas, occasion […]

Bolos Lêvedos

“Bolos Lêvedos” are small cylindrical cakes, slightly sweetened, with a porous mass and slightly browned crust, baked on the “sertã” (frying pan) or in a metal sheet, sprinkled with flour. It is a traditional specialty of “Furnas Valley”, with a great economic impact associated to the opening of the Hotel Terra Nostra, in 1935, becoming […]


The “Alfenim” is a sweet made with sugar, water and vinegar, of an ancient oriental recipe and with a long history. It reached the Iberian Peninsula by the hands of the Arabs who called it “al-fenid” that means that which is white, pure. The Spaniards took it to Mexico and the Portuguese to Brazil. From […]

Vegetable fibers

Vegetable fibers formed, such as wood, one of the first natural resources within reach of the inhabitants of the Archipelago of the Azores. They were easily obtained from the reed, bamboo cane, bulrush, wicker and dragon tree. The agriculture indirectly provided other plant matter such as corn leaves and wheat straw. Among the varied objects […]

Other Arts and Crafts Not Certified

The Azores have a wealth of handmade creations both linked to specific economic activities such as the popular art and the imagination. In fact, are many and varied works of interest and quality produced by our artisans. In the midst of a variety of techniques and materials used, it’s elevated the authenticity in which they […]

Fish Scales

The diversity of fish in the sea of the Azores, influenced the artistic imagination of the Azorean artisan. The scales are cleaned in several waters and transformed into delicate petals or leaves that, later are shaped with scissors, with great skill, composing flower clusters. The more traditional works are mainly flowers, of the most varied […]

Fig Tree Kernel

From the white matter of the core of fig branches, the artisan with patience and a steady hand, creates beautiful and delicate figurines typical of the Azores. The oldest works of Euclides Rosa, are exposed at the Museum of Horta. Nowadays, the pieces made of the fig tree kernel include floral motifs, mills or sailing […]

“Lapinha” Christmas Cribs

Authentic miniature Christmas cribs, perpetuate the birth of Christ throughout the year. The central theme is the cave that houses the Holy Family, all the other elements of biblical or everyday scenes are organized around it, through small figures of painted pottery, fragments of rock, moss, plants, flowers and tiny sea shells . Within domes […]

“Registos” of Senhor Santo Cristo Dos Milagres

The cult of Senhor Santo Cristo dos Milagres, of great devotion and attraction, is also the reason for the creation of the “Registo”, a beautiful piece in homage to the patron. It was the monastic work of the Sanctuary nuns, competent in many of the manual arts. Nowadays it´s a piece of interest for many […]


Straw wrapping


Produzidos segundo as técnicas da cestaria, apresenta-se como um artefacto cheio de simbolismo, evidenciando uma atividade própria, identificadora da sua origem, durante muito tempo confinada ao Pico e generalizada às demais ilhas em meados do século passado, quando começaram a ser exportados para a América. Uma das atividades que caracterizou a freguesia de Santo Amaro [&[…]

Wood Locks

These locks, a traditional production on the smallest island of the archipelago, associated with rural life, some still remaining, especially in agricultural shelters, are an emblematic product of the local handicraft that has maintained its relevance throughout the centuries, becoming inseparable from the history of the Region and the people from Corvo. In the production […]



A arte de trabalhar as fibras vegetais revela um entendimento da terra, do clima, dos ciclos vegetativos, das plantas e suas características. Revela, também, saberes antigos e técnicas transmitidas de geração em geração. Os açorianos sempre procuraram dar resposta aos desafios do seu quotidiano, demonstrando imaginação e engenho na aplicação e transformaçã[…]


O junco, a cana bambu, a espadana e o vime são fibras endógenas. Mas rapidamente se aproveitaram outros elementos vegetais resultantes de novas culturas que se foram introduzindo nas ilhas dos Açores, como o trigo o milho e o centeio. De entre os variados objetos produzidos a partir das fibras vegetais, os cestos de vime […]


  • Events
    PRENDA – Handicrafts Festival of the Azores
  • Events
    The Regional Center for Handicrafts promotes an unedited exhibition “Retalhos – an approach to the Azorean patchwork”
  • Events
    The Government of the Azores promotes a Residência Criativa for innovation in handicrafts

    The Vice-Presidency of the Government, through the Regional Center for Handicrafts (CRAA) and in partnership with Grater, promotes until November 5th, in the island of Terceira, the first phase of Residência Criativa in wood inlays, within the project Craft & Arts, which runs until December. The project “Craft & Art – Empowering by Innovation”, proposes […]

  • Events
    The Government of the Azores opens applications for the first handicraft incubator

    The Vice Presidency of the Government of the Azores, through the Regional Center for Handicrafts (CRAA), opens today the period for applications for the first handicraft incubator in the Region. The Azores Craftlab, according to the regulation published in the Official Journal, is a project that aims to support business projects and ideas in the […]

  • News
    The Government of the Azores assigns 260 thousand euros in incentives to the development of handicrafts
  • News
    The Regional Center for Handicrafts promotes an unedited exhibition “Retalhos – an approach to the Azorean patchwork”
  • News
    The handicraft certification committee is meeting this month of April.

    Certification and Protection of the Regional Products.   Bearing in mind the importance of protecting the local Azorean products, mainly when they are promoted and sold outside the archipelago’s boundaries, the certification of origin and quality is a valuable tool for the cultural and marketing upgrade of these products. The decree no. 89/1998, of 3rd […]

  • News
    The Government of the Azores opens candidacies to the Incentive System for the Development of Handicrafts

    The Vice-Presidency of the Government, through the Regional Center for Handicrafts (CRAA), promotes between February 15th and March 31st, the period of applications for the Incentive System for the Development of Handicrafts of the Azores (SIDART) for the year 2017. The support, according to an order published today in the Official Journal, includes projects that […]

  • Noticias
    Regional Government implements project “A avó veio trabalhar nos Açores”

    Ponta Delgada, April 10, 2019 Regional Government implements project “A avó veio trabalhar nos Açores” The Vice-Presidency of the Government, through the Regional Center for Handicrafts (CRAA) and in collaboration with the Municipal Council of Lagoa, will implement the project “A avó veio trabalhar nos Açores”. This initiative will be developed through a partnership with […]

  • Noticias
    The Government of the Azores marks on all the islands the European Artistic Craft Days
  • Noticias
    The Government of the Azores opens candidacies to the Incentives System for the Development of Handicrafts
  • Noticias
    Viola da Terra certified as a product of the brand “Artesanato dos Açores”
  • Publications and Products
    Launching of the Book “Doçaria Açoriana – Da História Que os Gestos Contam”

    The launch of the book “Doçaria Açoriana – Da História Que os Gestos Contam” is integrated into the Program of the European Artistic Crafts Days. The ceremony was at the Luís da Silva Ribeiro Public Library and Regional Archive, in the city of Angra do Heroísmo, on April 1st. The book is authored by the anthropologist [&[…]

  • Publications and Products
    Antique Weaving Of the Azores – Catalog

    Following the certification process of weaving in the Azores, in June 2001, the then Regional Economic Affairs Secretariat, through the Regional Centre for Handicrafts and under the patronage of the Presidency of the Regional Government made this year a dedicated period especially for weaving, not only giving it the quality status it deserves, through certification […]

  • Publications and Products
    Wooden Door Locks – Corvo

    Even today, very few are the houses whose doors are locked and, ironically, this is the home of one of the most unique pieces of the Azorean handicrafts, wooden door locks from Corvo. Most likely is the last stronghold of a medieval time when raw materials were scarce, but abundant was the ingenuity and the […]

  • Publications and Products
    Lace of the Azores – Islands of Pico and Faial

    “Rendas dos Açores – Ilhas do Pico e do Faial” is the published result of a partnership project between the Regional Secretariat of Economy, through the Regional Centre for Handicrafts, the Association for the Regional Development, Adeliaçor, and the Association for the the Development of Patrimony, the “Alvião”, which in 2004 aimed at the promotion […]


Patchwork Workshop
Calendar of events 2019
Soap Workshop
Accessories with Vegetable Fibers Workshop