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Make a Pajaki Chandelier with Karolina Merska

How to build and create your own Pajaki with Polish maker Karolina Merska

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Pajaki (pah-yonk-ee) are traditional Polish chandeliers made from rye straw and paper. Their history dates back to the mid-18th century.

Suspended from a ceiling in a main room, amongst colourful paper cut-outs, paintings and paper flowers they became a popular decoration in Polish village houses. Made by country women as decorations for their homes especially for Christmas, Easter, as well as for weddings and christenings. They were a symbol of harvest and happiness in New Year.

Originally made from materials available during winter like peas, beans, thread, feathers or yarn and from the late 19th century straw was decorated with different varieties of paper flowers and ribbons.

The craft was being practised less and less, but Karolina Merska is a pajaki maker reviving the tradition. She has travelled extensively in Poland to unearth and understand the history of the pajaki, to meet the makers, hone her techniques and to help regenerate this lost art. Her work has been published worldwide, including on Channel 4, The World of Interiors, House and Garden, Elle Decoration, Elle Deco Italia, The Telegraph, Time Out, Harpers Bazaar and many more. As a Polish maker who has studied the pajaki tradition extensively, she is a perfect teacher for the pajaki craft.

In this course, she will teach you the skills and techniques to create a basic 2-layered pajaki, with 9 traditional Polish “kalinka” pom poms.

In 46 minutes of video and additional downloadable material, you’ll learn:

VIDEO

• A brief history of the pajaki

• How to choose colours and where to find your inspiration

• The basic construction of the pajaki, including wrapping the hoop

• How to make a “kalinka” pom pom

• How to assemble all elements to create your very own pajaki chandelier

PDF

• Course outline, with illustrated guidance

• Materials list, with recommended products

• Further reading recommendations

Please note, some of the pajaki making process is repetitive and some of the video lessons, such as the “kalinka” pom pom lesson, show the same action several times. Once you have mastered your first “kalinka” pom pom, you will go on to make 8 more.

This course has been shot with a combination of a one locked-off shot and one hand-held camera in Karolina’s East London studio to give a documentary-style feel and to best capture the beauty of the traditional pajaki making process.

Price is £60 which reflects Karolina's extensive research into uncovering this lost craft through multiple visits to Poland over many years, and our pricing supports artists and makers in their ongoing artistic endeavours.

You can split the cost over 6 months if preferred and receive the course immediately.





Your Course Outline


  Meet Karolina Merska
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  Downloadable Materials
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  The History of the Pajaki
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  What You'll Need
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  Step 1. Considering Colour
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  Step 2: Preparing the Straws
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  Step 3: Wrapping the Hoop
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  Step 4: Attaching the Threads
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  Step 5: Preparing the Paper Discs
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  Step 6: Assemble the Upper Arms
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  Step 7: Making Pom Poms
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  Step 8: Final Assembly
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  Share Your Pajaki
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About Karolina


Karolina Merska pajaki

Originally from Poland and fascinated by London’s creative atmosphere, Karolina Merska moved here in 2007 shortly after obtaining an MA in History of Art at the Jagiellonian University Krakow in Poland. Inspired by the rich, interesting history of Polish folk art she started making pająki chandeliers in 2015. Her work has been published worldwide, including Channel 4, The World of Interiors, House and Garden, Elle Decoration, Elle Deco Italia, The Telegraph, Time Out, Harpers Bazaar and many more. Exhibitions include London Design Festival 2016, 2017, Ace Hotel London 2016, Brussels Design September 2017, Łódź Design Festival 2017 and Copenhagen 2017. She loves sharing her knowledge and teaching pajaki craft. She runs workshops in her studio in East London as well as travel around Europe. Her Yodomo online course will enable anyone in the world to make a unique pajaki.

About this School


Yodomo
Yodomo

Yodomo courses have been specially commissioned and produced by the Yodomo team. We scout the world for the best in the creative industries and help them share their skills through online video tutorials.

We work in partnership with individuals, small businesses, book and magazine publishers, arts organisations, retailers and many more.

To find out more about becoming a Yodomo tutor do please contact us at [email protected] or sign up to receive more details as we grow the platform.


Frequently Asked Questions


When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

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