Embroidery Day: Ukrainian tradition is fashionable!

Embroidery is a type of Ukrainian Decorative Folk Art; ornamental or plot images on fabric, skin, made various hand or machine-made stitching; one of the most common types of manual labor for Ukrainian women, including girls. Embroidery is a part of Ukrainian life, and it is embodied in clothes, mainly in women's and men's shirts. In addition, the embroidery can be found on common household items: tablecloths, pillowcases, towels and so on. But the most interesting and thus most popular embroidery has always been the traditional Ukrainian shirt known as “vyshyvanka”. Today there are thousands of different types of them.

Ukrainian embroideries are diverse in form, color and pattern. Colors of the thread are generally limited to a certain number of compounds and harmonious. Mostly used are black and red tint or black, carmine and yellow. Sometimes the images also incorporate green and blue. Rarely silver, gold and gray threads are used. Generally richness of color increases from north to south. Special embroidery motifs have long existed for men's shirts only, others – for women and children. There are variations for older and younger people and so on.

Nowadays, when our country is experiencing a strong growth of identity, embroidery has become international obligatory attribute of a modern Ukrainian person as a symbol of national identity. However embroidery is not only a good example of a popular folk craft. This garment is extremely stylish and modern. That is why the teachers of the department of philology at Kharkiv National Automobile and Highway University honored the Embroidery Day by dressing up traditional Ukrainian shirts. This is not only beautiful, elegant and important - as teachers of the department convince - but also a great opportunity to show foreign students the very spirit and traditions of the Ukrainian people, to acquaint them with Ukrainian culture, tell more about the country in which they now live and study. Interesting as it is, many students of the preparatory faculty, the girls mostly, looking at their teachers’ embroidered shorts told about what similarities and differences between traditional Ukrainian and Arabic or Moroccan embroidery, admitted interesting parallels, immediately searching for examples online via their gadgets. And all this is another facet of international communication, which leads to peace, cooperation and mutual understanding.

However, a friendly chat is not the only goal of the Embroidery Day celebration at the Department of Philology. Unfortunately, sometimes foreigners get very false impression about us, our history and prospects of Ukraine as a European state. So maybe because of that even more than any other reason, teachers of Russian as a foreign language put on an unusual attire on the 19-th of May with the idea to express that despite all the difficulties and problems of today to be Ukrainian means something we can and ought to be proud of!