How to Make Wycinanki: Polish Paper Cutting from PaperMatrix
Wycinanki (pronounced vi-chee-nahn -key) Polish paper cutting, became popular in the mid-1800's as a way for peasants to decorate their modest rural dwellings. Designs were fashioned after nature and were made with a mix of vibrantly dyed paper. Rectangular floral patterns embellished long wooden beams, while vivid roosters and star patterns hung in windows, or given as gifts. Deep in the southeast region of Poland, I can imagine my own ancestors cutting out symmetrical medallions of blue peacocks, yellow stars, and red poppies to hang on cold winter walls. When the paper faded it was simply thrown away and made again.
Papermatrix has an easy tutorial on how to make several different (say it slowly) wycinanki designs.
(all images: papermatrix)