Meet Karolina Merska, pajaki maker and Polish folk art reviver
Meet Karolina Merska, artist & Yodomo instructor reviving the tradition of creating beautiful pajaki (pronounced pah-yonk-ee), traditional Polish paper chandeliers made from rye straw and paper.
WHAT IS PAJAKI?
Pajaki symbolise health and happiness and date back to the 18th century when they were made in the countryside by women as decorations for their homes.
Pajaki were especially popular at Christmas, Easter, weddings and christenings. Today the tradition is practised less and less.
Originally from Poland, Karolina has an MA in History of Art and has worked to unearth and understand the history of the pajaki; meeting the makers, honing her techniques and regenerating this dying folk art.Passionate about making and teaching pajaki craft, Karolina runs workshops in her studio in East London, and shares her skills worldwide with three online courses with Yodomo.
TRY KAROLINA'S COURSES
- Her Make a pajaki paper chandelier is an intensive papercraft online course - it's like being with Karolina in the studio for a day! Follow Karolina as she talks you through making each step of the beautiful paper chandeliers to create one in your own home.
- In Make a kalinka pompom she teaches you how to make a traditional Polish kalinka pom pom, which are an integral component to the pajaki, adding splashes of colour to festivities. Just £4.99.
- Try her Make a paper rose course for free! Traditionally made in the Kurpie region of Poland, the paper rose is made in many different colours and are added to pajaki chandeliers made from peas or beans.
Follow @karolinamerska on Instagram, and see more examples of her wonderful pajaki papercraft.