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As a travel and lifestyle writer, and digital storyteller, I travel extensively for work and pleasure. One place that truly blew my mind, that I found totally underrated (of which I’ve written about previously), is the country of Ukraine. I had the opportunity to visit different regions and cities. This destination should be visited more often because the prices are unbeatable (great for budget travelers), amazing food, beautiful views, great shopping, currently undiscovered by tourists (as of yet), and the local people are really friendly and welcoming. Also, as a fashionista, I truly loved the sense of style Ukranians have naturally. One unique experience I had was documented on my IG account last year, celebrating Embroidery Shirt Day (Ukranian Vyshyvanka day), which I celebrated with the people from Cobblestone Freeway Tours in my favorite city, Lviv (known as the little Paris of Ukraine).
What is Ukranian Vyshyvanka Day?
Ukranian Vyshyvanka day is such a beautiful and magical national holiday. Celebrated every year on May 18, it is dedicated to the embroidery shirt – part of the Ukrainian National Costume. But Vyskyvanka day is observed internationally on the third Thursday of May, meaning today. For me, it was amazing to see how almost everyone (men and women) paid homage by wearing traditional and modern embroidered tops, dresses, flower headbands and more. And the embroidery is different depending on the region.
It’s so beautiful to see how Ukrainians keep this tradition alive since, it’s not only a day of pride, it is also designed to promote unity and cultural revival of all multinational Ukrainian people. It is intended to unite all Ukranians over the world, regardless of religion, language spoken or location. It’s a day to really show the love for their culture through style! Even I showed my love for Ukraine and now I feel as if I’m an honorary Ukranian, not only by participating in this holiday, but also after having lived in Lviv, Ukraine for several months.
My experience celebrating Ukranian Vyshyvanka Day in Lviv Ukraine
I totally loved walking around Lviv streets and seeing everyone dressed up. By wearing an embroidery dress, I felt like I was part of it all as I walked along the charming, cobblestoned streets. It’s the magic of locals that really makes all the difference. I met the sweetest people who smiled and asked you to join them for drinks, food, and music. Ukraine is really the undiscovered pearl of the European continent!
Since I fell in love with this holiday, I wanted to share it with all of you. Like I always say, “You can find style in every culture” but, in the Ukraine, the streets are more like a runway. Ukrainian embroidery (вишивка, vyshyvka) is an ancient and symbolic tradition that occupies an important place in their decorative arts and culture. It has long appeared on Ukranian folk wear, dresses, wedding gowns and other fun celebrations such as this holiday.
Here at my go to Beauty Salon when I am in Lviv, Eleven Beauty Bar (which unfortunately closed on August 2018.)
Through the Ukranian Vyshyvanka day you cannot only see the patriotism for the city of Lviv, but also for the whole Ukraine. Vyshyvanka dress is a staple uniform for women, men, and children, to literally showcase history on their bodies.
This, and many other traditions, made me fall in love with Ukraine, yearning to return year after year, and furthermore promote it for the amazing destination it is (I hope that I inspire your visit too). I promise you that you will be totally surprised by the beauty and magic of Ukraine.
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