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Ukrainians Celebrate World Vyshyvanka Day

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Photo: Ukrainians Celebrate World Vyshyvanka Day. Source: Freepik
Photo: Ukrainians Celebrate World Vyshyvanka Day. Source: Freepik

Every year, on the third Thursday of May, Ukrainians around the world celebrate World Vyshyvanka Day—a holiday dedicated to traditional Ukrainian clothing. This celebration was initiated in 2006 by Ukrainian students, as noted in the European Commission's greeting.

The third Thursday of May was chosen intentionally. The organizers emphasize that Vyshyvanka Day should fall on a weekday rather than a weekend to highlight that the vyshyvanka is an integral part of everyday life and Ukrainian culture, not merely a museum artifact.

“What began 18 years ago when a few students decided to wear this traditional embroidered garment has now become a tradition observed by Ukrainians and their friends worldwide. In these challenging times, it is even more important to support Ukraine's culture and traditions. People of Ukraine, we stand with you today and in the long term,” stated the European Commission.

European politicians also extended their greetings to Ukrainians on this holiday. Notably, the President of Lithuania, Gitanas Nausėda, sent his congratulations.

"They say that the vyshyvanka, a part of the Ukrainian national costume, has the power to protect against misfortune and bring good luck. May it help bring Ukraine closer to victory!" wrote the Lithuanian president.

The EU Ambassador to Ukraine, Katarina Mathernová, greeted Ukrainians on Vyshyvanka Day and wished that this protective garment would provide the inner strength to endure during these times of invasion.

“Happy Vyshyvanka Day, Ukraine! Let us honour this symbol of resilience passed down through generations. Today, it is a reminder of our strength as we stand together against the brutal Russian aggression,” noted Katarina Mathernová.

The Belgian Embassy also extended its congratulations to Ukrainians on Vyshyvanka Day.

"The vyshyvanka has always been a symbol of beauty, wealth, strength, and unity. For centuries, it has also been a talisman for Ukraine’s defenders. Today, people around the world wear vyshyvankas as a sign of solidarity with Ukraine, as we are united in our support," said the Belgian Ambassador to Ukraine, Peter Van de Velde.

A vyshyvanka is a shirt adorned with ornate embroidery, which is a significant component of Ukrainian national attire. It shares origins with the embroidered shirts of the Slavic peoples of Eastern and Central Europe. Since the 20th century, it has been worn separately, alongside suits, as festive, patriotic, and ceremonial attire. Traditional Ukrainian shirt embroidery holds protective significance and varies by region, reflecting local traditions and beliefs.

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