The art of Reshetyliv carpet weaving comes to life on silk scarves: the new KYLYM collection

The art of Reshetyliv carpet weaving comes to life on silk scarves: the new KYLYM collection

This season, KHUSTYNA brand together with Ukrainian artists found inspiration in the works of traditional decorative and applied art.

The KYLYM collection is inspired by the ancient Ukrainian craft - carpet weaving. It aims to pay attention to this amazing art, which was practiced in different parts of Ukraine, being inspired by both everyday subjects and incredible wildflowers, birds, animals and landscapes.

The creators of KHUSTYNA brand carefully researched the history, development of the craft and it’s features in order to convey the importance, value and beauty of traditional art, to introduce it to as many people as possible.

The designs of this collection are homages to the amazing carpets of Ukrainian artists, known for the place of their creative activity - city of Reshetylivka, Poltava region. On new collection scarves, the brand turned to the work of famous Reshetiliv artists: Olga Pilyugina, Vasyl Derkach, Nadia Babenko.

The collection is exclusively presented in the TSUM on the 3rd floor, in the corner of the brand, as well as on the website of the KHUSTYNA brand. Scarves for men can be found on the -1st floor.

The collection consists of nine designs, six of which are inspired by Olga Pilyugina's carpets. However, not only the creations of the artist inspired designers of the brand, but also Olga, who became the face of the collection. The brand asked the artist about the creation of Reshetiliv carpets, about her personal path in art and achievements.

Where did the Reshetyliv carpet weaving begin and what is its uniqueness?

"The modern stage of the development of Reshetyliv carpet-making began as early as 1905 with a small weaving workshop where five wooden looms were installed. In the early 1920s, the workshop was transformed into the "Rose" factory, which later grew into the factory named after Klara Zetkin. Artists from different regions came here. Some of them settled in Reshetylivka. My parents are among them.

In their individual creativity, they tried to develop and improve the local tradition of plant carpet and embroidery, and for more than 30 years they taught other masters and artists at the Reshetyliv Art Vocational Technical School. At the same time as a teacher, dad created a family workshop.


I grew up in a creative environment, where since my childhood I mastered the basics of traditional composition, color, symbolism and the art of mastering the material, studied, researched and created my own works.

My path as an artist occurred during the difficult times of the decline of traditional crafts. When businesses were closed and most craftsmen ceased their activities, we in the family workshop continued to work regardless. In those days, tapestries were created in our workshop for the Presidential Administration, the Mariinsky Palace and other iconic institutions. Then it made it possible to preserve the workshop, not to lose the craft for Reshetylivka, and to give work to the carpet weavers who had previously worked at the once prosperous factory.

Now I have my own workshop where I realize my creative projects.

Today I understand that, to a very large extent, thanks to our creative and educational work, the carpet (tapestry) is back in trend.

Reshetyliv carpet weaving, which was formed on the basis of local traditions of the Poltava region, is a powerful cultural stratum consisting of individual artists-masters. Each of them studied the traditions and tried to enrich them by adding their own, new, special.

In carpet weaving, the most important thing is to create a pattern that would be interesting in this technique. You need to know all the insights and feel the material. Reshetyliv carpets are characterized by rounded shapes and lines, not bright colors, which are characteristic of local landscapes and in mood resemble the Poltava accent.

Forms and lines are subject to technique so that the thread lies as naturally as possible.

The composition of Reshetiliv carpets is based on a floral ornament with a symbolic tree of life, birds, animals, flowers, berries, etc. It is interesting that flowers are often larger than birds, and they have flower-like shapes.

Carpets are created using the manual two-sided smooth weaving technique. They are woven on a vertical wooden loom that resembles a large frame. The pattern is formed by weaving threads, which are manually placed between the base. Traditional techniques for carpet making are used: rounding, rattling, on the border thread, with hooks, star. The combination of these techniques allows you to perform the most complex drawings. The carpet is compacted with a comb that looks like a wooden hammer with teeth. I use natural sheep's wool for work. I dye threads myself in a wide variety of shades.

This technology is significantly different from weaving on horizontal looms, where a shuttle is used and the position of the upper and lower warp threads is mechanically changed, which significantly speeds up the weaving process. But in this case, the picture is geometric (pixelated). The productivity of work on a horizontal machine is also ten times greater.


After all, we are talking about work on a vertical machine, which provides greater opportunities for the implementation of the most complex creative ideas.

It takes years to master carpet techniques at a high level. This cannot be learned in the format of master classes. It is an art and a craft that requires total dedication.


I have been making carpets for 30 years. During this time, Olga created more than 200 tapestries of various sizes, thematic and stylistic directions.

I am in constant creative search, my works embody the rich traditions of carpet making and my own creative achievements.

Traditions live when they develop.

Researching the best carpet-making achievements and experience, I follow artistic and design trends. I try to create tapestries where tradition and modernity are harmoniously intertwined.


I really like this technique and the material textures. I feel free, natural and confident. I get pleasure from the creative process - a sketch, working cardboard, coloring and selection of threads and weaving. It takes months, and sometimes years, to create tapestries. This is a leisurely art. So each work is a part of my life, my thoughts, emotions and aspirations.


I believe that art not only reflects on the surrounding events, but also has an educational function, directs, adjusts... The artist bears a special responsibility. To a large extent, we form a scale of values, a way of thinking, world perception and, as a result, the future.

My firm position is that art should be constructive regardless of the circumstances and remind of the true values and aspirations of a living human soul," shares Olga Pilyugina.

"Peacocks" scarf

inspired by the "Songland" carpet by Olga Pilyugina.


Peacocks are elegant and noble birds. Their multi-colored feathers make them stand out wherever they go. Peacocks on the scarves reflect the bright character of its owner - a luxurious and self-confident woman.

This scarf is presented in three color solutions: crimson-olive, blue-yellow and green in a reduced size for men.

"For me, this piece has a special meaning - the period of its creation fell on the time of being pregnant. We can say that we made this carpet together with my son.

Golden birds and a bright center symbolize the alive and hot among the colder rim covered with frost.

"Songland" opened a new bright period for me. Before that, my works were mostly pastel colors. And then I felt a love for bright ones. It was all intuitive, I simply put on the canvas the emotions I felt during this period - the joy of the life," says Olga Pilyugina.

"Turtledove" scarf

inspired by Olga Pilyugina's "Love Song" carpet.


The singing of doves in love extols love as the highest value that lifts a person above everyday life and purifies his soul.

This scarf is available in bright crimson and berry colors, as well as in blue in a reduced size for men.

Olga Pilyugina says: "This carpet is about harmony. On it is a pair of birds in love, filled with signs of the natural elements - sun, air, water and earth. Birds are a symbol of the light human soul that strives upwards."


"Harvest" scarf

inspired by several works of Olga Pilyugina: "Easter", "Vesnyanka" and "Nest".


The harvest on the scarves reflects the fertility and fecundity of the Ukrainian land, warmth and gratitude for everything it gives. Birds on it are harbingers of a new stage of life.


This scarf is made in the colors of golden autumn leaves.


"In Vesnianka, the birds fly separately in search of a mate. And in the "Nest" they already found each other and created a family nest. The tree fits into the shape of an egg, which is perfect and carries life. "Easter" carpet symbolizes a significant day of the greatest joy, when birds praise God in their songs from morning to evening," says Olga Pilyugina.

"Firebird" scarf

inspired by Vasyl Derkach's "Wedding" carpet.


The firebird symbolizes fire, the bright heat that it takes from the Sun, crushes it from the sky, sending it everywhere. A pair of firebirds on scarves is a symbol of love that warms, resurrects and inspires.

This scarf is presented in two colors: autumn - spicy orange and winter - cornflower.

The "Wedding" carpet is literally a wedding carpet, says its author, Vasyl Derkach.

"I created this carpet as a family amulet. The birds in the picture are a couple of newlyweds holding a flower. A flower is a symbol of happiness, which is rare. Therefore, every corner is covered with them on the canvas. Below, the tree of life is the ancestors, the roots of the newlyweds, which always supports them.

If one of the birds turns its head, the flower will fall and family happiness will be destroyed. It's the same in life — everyone in a couple needs to support and watch over family happiness!" - says Vasyl Derkach.

"Starry Night" scarf

inspired by Nadia Babenko's "Spring" carpet.


The colors of the scarves resemble the night sky and bright stars, which from time immemorial have been landmarks for people both in everyday life and in their personal lives.

This scarf is made in plum and pumpkin colors.


"Nadiya Babenko depicted spring on this carpet. The color scheme reflects the rebirth of nature: yellow colors inside - the sun, brown - the earth and the twigs that sprout from it. Birds are an image of the union of two elements, warm and cold, which symbolizes the transition from winter to spring," says Nadiya Babenko's son, Honored Master of Folk Art Oleksandr Babenko.


"Plant carpet production in Reshetylivka was born from the fact that a special Reshetylivka breed of sheep was bred in that area. Before chemical dyes appeared, natural, fluffy wool was first taken, plucked, and only then spun with a spindle or a spinning wheel. This is how threads were formed, from which carpets were then woven," Oleksandr Babenko shared in one of his interviews.

A characteristic feature of Reshetiliv plant carpeting is the principle of building an ornament with a picturesque solution to the background. The compositional motifs echo the archaism of ancient peasant carpets. The color range is mostly warm, earthy shades.

Now these scarves can be seen on silk. You can buy scarves from the new KYLYM collection on the website KHUSTYNA.COM

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