These are the sorts of wooden pysanky I used to collect when I was young, and when Ukraine was locked behind the Iron Curtain.  Some handcrafts did trickle out, and could be purchased at Ukrainian gift shops.  I couldn't afford real pysanky, and hadn’t yet learned to make them very well, so these were the pysanky of my youth.

Wooden pysanky have been painted for generations by Hutsul craftsmen and women in the Carpathians, and sold throughout Ukraine and eastern Europe.  Many collections in the USA, according to an ethnographer friend of mine, contain wooden “pisanki” painted in Ukraine and purchased in Poland.

Most of these wooden pysanky resemble real ones quite closely, and utilize traditional divisions and motifs.  The egg is painted a dark background color, and then lighter paints are applied to create a design. 

Traditional Painted

Wooden Eggs

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