Hutsuls who live in the Carpathians are well protected from the world by their mountains, and their traditions, passed from generation to generation, remain largely unchanged. They wear their traditional clothes, they believe in the fairy tales and legends of old, they have their age-old superstitions. They greet strangers, saying «Glory to Jesus Christ!» and expect to hear in reply, «Glory to God for all eternity!»
Kosiv is famous for its outstanding artists, that not only create beautiful things, but also keep national traditions in embroidery, ceramics, weaving, forging, making wooden, linen and woolen things, pysankas. Kosiv region is really rich in talents — there is such an artist almost in every house. This town could be called the capital of pysankas — people come from all over the world just to have a look at these masterpieces. This admiration of pysanka is the reason why there is a unique monument in the center of the town — a monument to an egg. Nowhere else will you see anything of the kind, so it’s advisable that you not omit it.
Different kinds of crafts have also been developed here. Artistic works created by the hands of carvers, potters, and tailors are distributed all around the world and can be seen in the museums of New York, Toronto, Kyiv and Moscow. Both foreigners and Ukrainian tourists consider it a necessity to visit a well-known Kosiv bazaar and buy crafts there.
The works of Precarpathian craftsmen, particularly of the Kosiv district are well known in Canada, France, Great Britain, Japan, USA and many other countries. Highlanders have long mastered the use of natural materials such as wood, stone, clay, wool, non-ferrous metals, ozocerite and bee’s wax. The most popular forms of folk art are wood-carving, incrustation on wood and poker-work (burning out pictures or patterns on wood with a small burning rod), ceramics, embroidery, weaving and carpet-making, metal- and leather-work. Ceramics from Kosiv — clay from the Carpathians warmed and shaped by human spirit.
The Hutsel Museum in the center of town has a great collection of traditional Hutsul arts and crafts.
In Kosiv there is unique and only one in the Europe an State Institute of Applied and Decorative Arts with centenary history, in which the true masters — teach known all over the world descendants of dynasties Korpanyuks, Shkryblyaks and Druchkyvs.
There are some shops in the center of the town, where some souvenirs, embroidery, pysankas, works of straw and wood are sold. Where else, if not here, you can buy drymba — the musical instrument, which is typical for the land of hutsuls.
Kosiv is famous for the Hutsel Bazar every Satuday morning. Craftspeople from all over the region come together to sell their wares. Woman, from the neighboring small mountian villages, line up selling the traditional blankets. Don’t forget to visit this market. This gives you an excellent opportunity to see and buy the widest range of the most interesting works of Kosiv masters. Embroidered sorochkas and rushnyks, skirts, other items of clothes; postoly; a lot of things made of beads, wood, leather, stones — different kinds of necklace, gerdanas, bracelets, earrings etc; ceramics — beautifully painted dishes and statues; hobelens, carpets… Turn your attention to the lizhnyks of sheep wool. These are very warm and nice blankets that, besides this, have some curative effect — those who use them, get cured of rheumatisms, arthritis, heart diseases, they are good for skin, joints and nerves as well.
When you will come to Kosiv you will inevitably get charmed with the picturesque and clean nature. People here live in harmony with the nature and don’t offend it.
Kosiv was, is and will be a place to visit for everybody interested in ethnic roots of hutsuls or just involved with folk applied art and unbelievably beautiful and clean nature.