What Are Pajaki? And How Do You Get Your Hands On One?

The Polish word “pajaki” literally translates to “spiders of straw” in English, but the paper chandeliers made through this art form are so much prettier than the name would suggest. The town of Lowicz, which is 90 miles outside Warsaw, and surrounding villages are known for their colorful folk art, but, lately, the pajaki, which are also called mobiles, are generating some buzz on the internet. The delicate paper chandeliers are handmade by girls and women to decorate the home in bright colors of pink, orange, yellow, blue, and purple. These colorful mobiles, along with flower paintings and paper cut-outs, probably provided a much needed respite from the dreary Polish winters. Sometimes, all you need is a bright and colorful greeting to make you forget Jack Frost at your back. Fortunately, you don’t have to go all the way to Poland to get your hands on a pajaki. The Polish Art Center has several examples of traditional pajaki created by the older, less modern generation. Or you can try your hand at making one yourself, like this one by Wren Handmade. And if you’re in the NYC area, I hear designer Lena Corwin sells her versions for $35 to $65 at the Brooklyn Flea Design Co-Op]