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Custom Reveal Your Pysanka
Unwax your own eggshell to reveal a unique design, just for you! Share a unique experience, explore your love of this traditional Ukrainian tradition, and make powerful memories!
2 in stock (can be backordered)
Are you a fan of the art of pysanky who isn’t quite sure where to start learning? Want to show your family a ltitle bit about your Ukrainian heritage, without investing in expensive dye kits and storage, and kistky? Are your children too young to learn, but still eager to participate?
The art of pysanky holds something for everyone–and Nolie Wilson is a firm believer that there are parts of the process that everyone can engage with. Whether it is allowing children to draw their designs in pencil, and have an adult write with wax, or a similar accommodation–or Nolie’s own twist, allowing children or non-writers to learn how to handle pysanky through the handling of the reveal… the moment the wax melts away from the eggshell to reveal a stunning design, like cracking open a geode to reveal the jewels inside the plain matrix rock.
This eggshell is designed especially to allow its new owner the thrill of the discovery. It will arrived covered in wax- but ready to unwax, depressurized to reduce likelihood of a difficult unwaxing, with the skilled preparation to unwax handled, to reduce any potential for mishaps. You will be provided with instructions on how to finish it without the purchase of any additional tools–although if you wish to ensure colors remain bright, and protect from cleaning mishaps, you may wish to select the “With Varnish” option. You will receive a can of pysanky-suitable varnish gift-ordered from Amazon and shipped right to your doorstep by Nolie, to reduce hangups in shipping hazardous substances, to accompany the drain cover/ornament top included with the eggshell, enabling your pysanky to remain vibrant for generations, if you purchase this option.
Unwaxing the egg is a craft that only takes 20-30 minutes, depending how much setup to protect the surface it is being unwaxed on is needed. But it can make the experience of acquiring a pysanka all the more memorable, as one witnesses its emergence from the dulling wax that had hidden it. For those who are determined to have a pysanka that feels a little more to their taste than the more random pick of the ready-to-ships, you can opt for a custom Reveal-Your-Own. For this option, you specify a simple theme: a word, a color palette, or a sample motif to take inspiration from… and Nolie will go from there, creating a pysanka just for you, themed off your inspiration, and prep it for unwaxing, before shipping it to you.
The pysanky in this listing are all simpler designs- fewer dye baths than custom work that Nolie can monitor the finishing of to ensure removal goes smoothly. Perfect for those who are primarily looking to educate, or those who are looking to demonstrate, but still looking to reveal a personal message, or otherwise have an egg that works with their artistic preferences or occasional needs. Please note that all Reveal Your Pysanka eggshells are sold AS IS; Nolie has not even seen the design under the wax, and thus can not say whether it has a unique manufacturing quirk. Because of the nature of writing pysanky, in which the artist waxes in each layer of the design without removing the previous layer of wax, and only sees the full thing at the end when all the wax has been removed, each buyer will be seeing their pysanky even before the artist has seen the finished pysanky without the wax.
But the nature of this purchase means that the buyer assumes all risk for the randomness of the design, and any ideosyncracies of production that may become evident during the unwaxing stage. By its nature, this stage is still unpredictable, and your results may vary. This is part of the mystery of the experience. That the art of pysanky will always find a way to surprise you with what you get. That is why the images in this listing are intended to give the purchaser an idea of varying levels of complexity of pysanky included in unwaxables, from 1-3 dye bath pysanky, to 3-7 dye bath pysanaky, and every in between step. The detail and variety in the art is astounding, and the surprise of watching the wax melt off to half-reveal your design, as you see more and more of it emerge, can be a euphoria like any other.
Nolie’s inspiration for the idea came after encountering the explosion of popularity in the art form after the war against Ukraine began. With so many people taking an interest, but not everyone feeling comfortable holding a kistka, Nolie wished for a way to bring the more intimate and meaningful moments of writing a pysanka to people who might otherwise feel intimidated, as a way of bringing the joy and intimacy of that cultural connection with the Ukrainian people to them. As a survivor, Nolie has encountered how easy it is to be reduced to a caricature of the worst things that have happened to them. It is something that they frequently encounter as a Jewish person in encounters with non-Jewish people, too, especially in conversations about anti-Semitism, where the joys and cultural highlights of being Jewish tend to be erased, in favor of an uncomfortable fixation on suffering. Being aware of this dynamic made Nolie particularly eager to encourage accessible ways of introducing pysanky to interested audiences, to preserve as much of that audience’s connection with the joy of that Ukrainian cultural identity, that even now, millions of people are fighting, and many dying, to protect. The more of the process one sees, and understands, and brings into one’s heart, the more of it one carries with you when we must all carry the heartbreak of witnessing the bloodshed and war crimes Ukraine has borne. Nolie hopes that it might work as a way of reassuring people that even now, Ukrainians are dyeing their eggs, with what supplies are available, and finding joy. Adaptation and survival are core human traits. And as Mr. Rogers said– “look for the helpers.” Pysanky writing is fundamentally an act of hope, and trying to help, sending good wishes out into the world. Perhaps, by feeling the wax leave the egg, and the thought enter the world, yourself, that exact moment, it will make it easier for you to feel what I feel every time I unwax an egg myself, as the egg’s thought enters the world, with thousands of others from other artists out there in the metaphorical ether in that moment of potential, a reminder of the community wishes, and hopes, and that no matter how scary things are, none of us are alone. There is a comfort in it beyond simply the art, and I hope that in this cultural and historical exploration–and fun experience to share with any artistic family members–you might find a little bit of the same comfort in it I have.