Embroidered Shirt Day 2024: when, history, Ukrainian traditions

By Jurassic JennMay 5, 2024 20:34 PMDaily News
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Embroidered Shirt Day 2024
Embroidered Shirt Day 2024. Source: kram.kr.ua

The embroidered shirt is not only a special element of festive national clothing, but also an important part of the culture of the Ukrainian people. Therefore, every Ukrainian should know about the existence of such an event as Embroidered Shirt Day. This was reported by SSPDaily.

Ukrainian embroidery and vyshyvanka: history

According to historians and archaeologists, certain elements of embroidery existed on the clothes of the Scythians, who lived on the territory of modern-day Ukraine before Christ. During the times of Kievan Rus, embroidered clothes were also worn, and references to the special attire of Rusyns can be found in the records of many travelers.

Throughout the centuries, the Ukrainian people have cherished their love for embroidery and preserved the special traditions of its creation. Each region of Ukraine boasts its own unique customs associated with national ornaments on clothing.

The history of special Ukrainian embroidery is associated with the Trypillia culture of the Late Neolithic period. The Trypillians were skilled potters, but they not only made beautiful pottery from clay but also decorated it with spiral patterns. Historians are convinced that similar symbols could be seen on Trypillians' clothing.

During the excavations of the Sokolova Grave, located in the Mykolaiv region, a burial of a Sarmatian priestess was found, where there was also a fragment of silk fabric with golden embroidery. This particular find dates back to the first century BC.

When it comes to the motifs found in Ukrainian embroidery, geometric patterns are considered to be the oldest: various rhombuses, zigzags, circles, wavy lines, meanders, specks, etc. Embroidery techniques such as the straight stitch and retiaz (a kind of cross) were commonly used. The latter was especially popular in the west of modern Ukraine.

The nineteenth century marked a turning point in the history of embroidery. It was then that the profession of embroiderer emerged. People used to order embroidered shirts for the whole family. From then on, people didn't have to decorate their clothes themselves because the craftswomen did everything. Ivan Franko popularized embroidery among the Ukrainian intelligentsia. He was the first to boldly combine an embroidered shirt with a business jacket.

When is Vyshyvanka Day 2024

In 2006, Ukraine introduced a special holiday - Embroidered Shirt Day. It was initiated by Lesia Voroniuk, who at the time was a student at the History Department of Chernivtsi National University. The girl suggested that her classmates choose a day and come to lectures in national costumes. This idea was supported not only by students but also by teachers. Over the years, the tradition has become popular throughout Ukraine. The date always falls on the third Thursday of May. In 2024, it will be May 16. The event is more symbolic in nature, as it is not tied to a public or church holiday.

Vyshyvanka Day is especially significant in 2023, as Russia continues its full-scale war against Ukraine. Wearing an embroidered shirt on May 16 will become a symbol of the indomitable Ukrainian spirit, a statement to the whole world that Ukrainians are a free people.

Vyshyvanka Day is an event aimed at preserving Ukrainian traditions and passing them on to the next generation.

How Vyshyvanka Day is celebrated in Ukraine

There are no special events on Vyshyvanka Day. However, every year in Ukraine, a special flash mob is held where people dress in national clothes, take pictures, and post them on social media. In peacetime, many cities hold concerts, festivals, fairs, and photo shoots. Unfortunately, during the war, mass events are prohibited. However, each of us who is currently safe can wear an embroidered shirt to support the spirit of Ukrainians and Ukrainian soldiers.

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