Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday is my day: Skrynka

It's time for a visit to Ukraine, to say hi to Natalka. Her Etsy shop is full of beautiful embroidery, both to wear as for example jewelry and belts, and to decorate your walls. Be sure to take a look!

Enjoy and happy Midsummer!

My name is Natalya Pavlysh, but I like it when friends call me Natalka. I live in Ukraine, in the longest city, Kryvy Rih. It is 150 km long so some people from south of the city never meet those from its north.

As a child I loved making things with my hands. Whenever I saw interesting clothes, bags, scarves my first thought was "can I make it myself?". So I know how to crochet, sew, knit, bead... but when I started to embroider, it became my passion. I just can't stop since!

Now I am currently a stay at home mom and as I have got plenty of time I decided to use it wise, turning my passion into a little business so I opened my Etsy shop. Skrynka (Скринька) in Ukrainian means little box, usually used to keep treasures like jewelry or granny's legacy. I imagine that my shop can be a little box of embroidered treasures: jewelry, home decor, accessories.

As you will see I spend my days around my baby-son Oleg, husband Yaroslav and my etsy shop Skrynka.

We usually wake up around 7 o’clock. But we get up a little later. I’m a breastfeeding mother and the first thing my son wants, when he wakes up, is having his breakfast.
While my husband is at home I try to check my e-mails and the Etsy forums threads as they are important for me. Then he goes to work and I have my breakfast. One thing I love most of the summer is that I can take a mix of berries for breakfast, vegetable salad for lunch and ice cream with currant as a night snack.

Then I try to embroider just a bit. Usually I can’t because Oleg is a very curious child and he must take my embroidery hoop or needle or bother me another way.

Nearly 9 or 10 o’clock Oleg has his morning sleep and if there was a sale, I pack it. The packaging of each order is always a little different. It depends of my mood, color of embroidery, envelop. But it is always a handmade box or bag.

I’m almost done, and have no time left to sit at my computer. In the morning my son sleeps about 30 minutes, rarely an hour. Oh, there’s still time to make a treasury...

When there are no sales, I spend this time for some designing or for inspirational things. I draw my designs on paper with colored pencils. I don't like to use computer programs for that. The old pencil and eraser method is much more creative.

Between morning sleep and lunch we go to the post office to ship orders. It is not so far from our apartment, just a few minute’s walk. Here we are. :)

Usually we use a baby-carriage for our walks but if it is a short distance to the shop or the post office I use a baby-carrier. On the way back home I buy some flowers. I like it when even a small bouquet stands near my monitor. It makes me smile. :)

After lunch we play a couple of hours and my son goes to sleep again. It is my craft time at last!

I’m working on the balcony. It is a small place where Oleg cannot come because the way is blocked with a chair. Only here I can expand all my tiny craft supplies. And there is enough light to take photos. But I can only take good photos in the morning, when the sun is shining.

Of course I also review my ETSY shop, e-mail and chat a bit with my teammates.

When I need inspiration, I visit Ukrainian and Slavic ornaments photo galleries, I look at my photos got in folk art museums or local exhibitions. I'm truly inspired by Ukrainian folk cross-stitching embroidery. It is in my blood I think. I have a few festive towels from my granny. She has embroidered them when she was young and now they need to be restored but they are so beautiful with their meaningful ornaments, she used ancients symbols of water, earth and the Guardian - keeper of the family fire.

I understand that I can't convey all the folk embroidery significance, but this is not my goal. I try to make wearable ethnic things that can find their place into everyday life.

Time goes quickly and at 16 o’clock Oleg wakes up and my crafty time is over until night.

This evening my husband plays tennis and after a snack we go for a walk to the courts. It is not so far, only an hour of strolling. So I use the baby carrier again and even decide to go by bus. A couple of days ago it was rainy but now it is hot again, very hot. And it isn’t pleasant to walk this time of the day.

Courts are near a small pond, there is a walk-only zone around and we can walk and play while the game goes on.

But Oleg misses his dad and for a while I cannot take him away from the fence.

It was a month ago but I can’t resist showing you the first place’s prize which my husband won. Isn’t it cute? It fits right into Etsy’s style!

When the game is over we go home. The heat is gone and we decide to walk. Oleg even eats and falls asleep in his sling.

We live in an industrial city but even here you can make good photos sometimes. This picture was taken 2 years ago on the bridge while we were heading back home. Look, do you notice the shaft and smocking pipes on the horizon?

We went home tired and Yaroslav with Oleg went to their beds immediately after bath. But I get my ice cream with currant and sit in front of the monitor.

There’s a lot of work to be done: e-mails, shop, treasuries and of course chat with my Etsy friends. :)


  1. It's wonderful to see how Skrynka's beautiful work is born in the midst of this oasis of love and care. Very nice article :)

  2. Thank you Maria! I'm happy with this opportunity to share my day!

  3. Wonderful friday! Wonderful works! Thank you for sharing!!!

  4. beautiful Skrynka's works! I like it!

  5. wonderful friday! Lively family and beautiful creations made with love)

  6. I enjoyed reading about your day! Thanks for sharing!

  7. Really enjoyed reading about you , your work and your family!

  8. Natalka, thank you for letting us meet you more privately. I enjoyed reading about your day!

  9. Thanks for sharing your day, I love it!

  10. Wow also a fully organised day!! HOw do we manage, hihihi Thanks for sharing!!

  11. Very interesting article! Excellent works good master!

  12. Great to meet you here Natalka ! I love how you make this modern twist on Ukrainian embroidery ! Very original and inspirational.

  13. Great read! Thanks for sharing your day!

  14. Many thanx to both of you for sharing Natalka's day!

  15. What a lovely post, thank you for sharing it with us!!!

  16. Lovely to meet you Natalka! Thank you for sharing your day with us :) Erika

  17. Love to know more about Natalka! We are fans of your embroidery! Thank you for showing us your day...