The Art of Polish Paper Cutting
Wycinanki is a Polish word for paper-cut designs. These beautiful paper cut-outs have been used to decorate the interior of Polish homes since the early 19th century!
Wycinanki vary according to region in Poland. For example, wycinanki created in the Kurpie region near Warsaw are typically single colored, while wycinanki from the Lowicz region west of Warsaw are multi-colored.
After making designs with traced patterns, an effort should be made to reproduce the same paper cut-outs free-hand. The many outstanding creations by young children should encourage other students who may feel that only an artist could be successful in such a feat.
How to Make Wycinanki from the Kurpie Region
Start with the single-colored Kurpie patterns. Fold a piece of colored paper. Place the pattern on the fold, trace and cut. Thin, shiny paper works best. The shaded parts and sections marked (x) in these patterns indicate where scissors are to be inserted in the more intricate designs. Unfold after the cutting has been completed and you have a Wycinanka from Kurpie!
How to Make Wycinanki from the Lowicz Region
Start with pieces of paper in each eight different bright colors. Use the Lowicz flower pattern to cut the paper of different colors. Then glue one on top of another as shown. Now try your hand at the Lowicz bird, choosing your own colors.