Twelve years ago, in the mountains of Indochina, an idea came into the mind of a well-established linguist, anthropologist and traveler Kirill Babaev: to make a collection of ethnic costumes. This idea, even though quite ambitious, could not be realised because of the lack of space which such a collection would inevitably eat. Therefore, a compromise decision was taken. This gave birth to the largest collection of ethnic headware which, after moving around various exhibitions and festivals in Europe, has finally acquired its new homeland in number 7, Vilandes street, in central Riga. 

Kirill Babaev himself who lives and works in both Moscow and Jurmala, felt it as a great relief. Since the collection has gone into the museum, his own home is suitable for living and working at least. The walls got rid of bewitched African head masks, and the wardrobes do not contain the risk of falling horned shaman helmets.

Yes, Kirill still travels a lot around the globe, both for business and science, and the collection is growing accordingly. But the founder of the museum is optimistic. "All this antique rubbish - to the museum please", he says every time bringing to Riga another cargo of bonnets, hats and shawls.