Scratchwork Eggs

Driapanky are a traditional, but far less common, form of Ukrainian egg decoration.  The name comes from the Ukrainian word driapaty/дряпати (“to scratch’), as the designs are created by dyeing an egg a single color, and then scratching through the dyed surface to expose the white shell below.  Driapanky could be created author on cooked or uncooked (krashanky) eggs.

Kulzhynskyi provides three examples of driapanky in his color plates, in Plate № XXXIII

The first two  driapanky were collected by Kulzhynskyi in eastern Ukraine, and they come from the cities of Voronezh and Kursk (both now under Russian hegemony). The third is from Podillia in central Ukraine; it is from the village of Ustia in Bershad raion, Vinnytsia oblast.

He also included additional examples in small, uncolored drawings:

1997 is the same as № 2 above.  1994-5 are from Voronezh, 1996-7 from Kursk, and 1999 from Podillia (Ustia, as above).

The photo at the top of the page is an illustration in a Soviet era folk art book documenting objects in the collection of the National Museum of Ukrainian Decorative Art.  Below are several of the same pysanky, taken from their website:

Below are two scratchwork eggs created by Arnie Klein from traditional Ukrainian designs; the one on the right is from the Soviet era book.

Scratchwork is a common form of egg decoration in many western Slavic countries, particularly Poland, where “skryobanki” are fairly common, and among the Czechs, Hungarians, Lithuanians, Slovaks and Sorbians.  This is an example of Polish scratchwork:

Below are examples of Czech scratchwork eggs:

And these are Sorbian:

And this set appears to be Slovak:

This type of egg decoration is even common among the Pennsylvania Dutch (who are actually German in origin) of North America.

  Krapanky        Maliovanky

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