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Social Sofa Vyshyvanka

Het idee achter de Oekraïense Social Sofa is  Vyshyvanka.

Vyshyvanka  is een Oekraïens traditionele kledingstuk: een overhemd met  specifiek geborduurde elementen erop. Het mozaïekproces is zeer vergelijkbaar met borduren proces. Dus in plaats van een draad en naald gebruiken deden wij het met behulp van duizenden glas steentjes.

Elke regio van Oekraïne heeft zijn eigen unieke ornament en techniek. Volgens het tradities  beschermt Vyshyvanka de overhemddrager en tegelijkertijd vertelt wat over de eigenaar. Elk element heeft zijn eigen betekenis. De belangrijkste bescherm ornamenten werden op de delen van de overhemd geborduurd die in contact komen met de huid: manchetten, kraag, enz.

Wij bedekten Social Sofa met een "steengeboordurde" kaart van Oekraïne. U kunt zien dat elke regio eigen traditionele Vyshyvanka-ornamenten bevat. De landkaart bedekt de bank als een warme plaid vol met de liefde en dankbaarheid.


Gedurende 28 weken, 4-8 uur per dag mozaïeken meer dan 50 Oekraïners deze Steen Sofa. Elke glas steentje is  met liefde en dankbaarheid er op gelijmd.


Sofa’s Helden

Wij, Oekraïners, zijn Nederland enorm dankbaar voor het helpen van Oekraïne, ons volk, onze verdedigers. Met deze Sofa willen we jullie bedanken. We hebben heel hard gewerkt om het perfect te maken. Deze Sofa samenvat en toont alles: onze cultuur, ons verzet, onze kracht, onze liefde, onze pijn, onze tranen, zelfs ons bloed (de randen van sommige stenen waren erg scherp).


We zijn de gemeente Zaanstad en vooral Erik van Druenen dankbaar dat we alles hadden wat er nodig was om onze creativiteit te kunnen uiten. Ook zijn er veel stenen aan ons geschonken door onze buurtbewoners, waarvoor wij ook zeer dankbaar zijn.


En natuurlijk ons grote dank aan het Topteam van SocialSofa Zaanstad dat ons de hele periode steunt en helpt. Truus Vegter, Sarah Angenent en Angelique Bleij-Oudejans lieten ons de juiste mozaïektechnieken aanleren en zorgen ervoor dat we alle materialen op tijd krijgen en er op de juiste manier een prachtig kunstwerk van maken. Bedankt!

Social Sofa Photos of all participants


Erik van Druenen

Gemeente Zaanstad


"Hi I am Angelique. I found myself really fortunate to be able to work with these ladies. They are hard working, smart and precise women. They invited me into their culture and were eager to know about ours. It was a beautiful project with an amazing result"

Angelique Bleij-Oudejans

Social Sofa Zaanstad

Sofa’s Heroes.png

"Architect designer from Kiev

I live in the Netherlands for 1 year with my son in a house that was provided by Ten Brinke owner. I really like the Netherlands, and thank you very much for accepting and helping us in such a difficult time for Ukraine!"

Oksana Sobol

Sofa Hero

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"Hi, I’m Alla, I was born and raised in Chernivtsi, Ukraine. I’ve been living in the Netherlands since 2015. In 2019 I moved to Zaandam.  Together with my husband Kirill we are raising our lovely son James.

I’m extremely grateful that I’ve had the chance to work on our gorgeous Vyshyvanka Sofa. I worked on Chernivtsi, Zhytomyr, Zakarpattja and Kherson regions"

Alla Kolibaba

Sofa Hero

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"My daughter and I arrived in the Netherlands in March 2022.

At various times I lived in Pavlograd (hometown), Dnipro, Zaporizhzhia and Kamianske (Dnipro region).

I am a chemist-technologist by education, I know manufacturing technologies and laboratory methods for testing various products.

I like music and nature walks"

Svitlana Maiorenko

Sofa Hero

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"I am from Lviv region.
Mosaicking the Sofa Vyshyvanka was like meditation for me. I am glad that I had the opportunity to invest a part of myself in this project❤️"

Khrystyna Hrechukh

Sofa Hero

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"I was born in Kiev, but last 8 years I lived in Irpin city.  

I came in Netherlands in March 2022 with my cat and yoga mat and started to set up my life here.

Today I'm a yoga teacher and give lessons in three languages, and hope soon will do it in Dutch)

Each my work on the Sofa was a meditation for peace for Ukraine"

Nataliia Gurinenko

Sofa Hero

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" I am a student with a very creative soul. Born in the city of Lviv in Ukraine. 

I am very happy that I was given the opportunity to leave my print on a real work of art"

Anastasija Kernitska (left)

Sofa Hero

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"I am Veronica. My family and I live in the Netherlands from 2014. I am from Ukraine, Dnipro city.I am a historian. I love nature. I have two lovely children. I am married. My hobby is meditation"

Veronika Domina

Sofa Hero

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" Hi! I’m a professional painter and art teacher from Kharkiv city (Ukraine), which was honoured to get a title of a hero-city in 2023. I and my daughter came to the Netherlands in March 2022 because of the war. 


NL is a beautiful and hospitable country. I’m happy to have had an opportunity to leave an imprint in the cultural environment of Zaandam."

Olena Smirnova

Sofa Hero


"Всім Привіт! I’m Beatriz, I am a skateboarder from Portugal but lived most of my life in The Netherlands, I came here when i was 5 years old, i started to learn the Ukrainian language one year ago, in 2022 i fell in love with the country the people and the language they are simply the best! I got inspired by the Ukrainian people! I am active as a demonstration person and also volunteer for the Ukrainian people, I feel deeply honored to have been invited for the Vyshyvanka sofa” project! I love Ukraine and Ukrainians with my heart and soul!"


Sofa Hero


"Hi, I am Truus Vegter and I coördinate Social Sofa project in Zaanstad. I was very happy when Erik van Druenen was able to generate budget from gemeente Zaanstad to order a sofa which we would mosaïc with Oekraïnians. I couldn't imagine that more then 50 ladies from Oekraïne would participate in this project. I am very gratefull that I could support these ladies in this social project and I am very proud of the result: most beautiful sofa in the Netherlands!"

Truus Vegter

Social Sofa Zaanstad

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"Architect from Dnipro, Ukraine.

24th February 2022 was the scariest day in my life.  This project helped me and others to survive this hard year. Sofa became solid foundation for our community. Project really glued us together. 

I feel proud of everyone who participated in SocialSofa project. Some of the people followed pattern and my instructions, others brought their own version and participated in designing process"

Bogdana Postrygan



"I came from the city of Mariupol to the Netherlands in March 2022 with my husband and son. In January 2023 our daughter was born here in the Netherlands. I am a hairdresser by profession. I love doing needlework.  I am very glad that I was able to take part in such a project as Sofa-Vyshyvanka"

Daria Dorogavtseva

Sofa Hero

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"Hello, i’m Iuliia, born and raised in Pavlograd, Dnipro region, studied in Dnipro, worked and lived for 5 years in Kyiv. Moved to Netherlands in 2019.

Social Sofa project was a great opportunity for me to release stress and restore emotionally. I’ve worked on Poltava, Ternopil’, Cherkasy regions, and especially Crimea, hope we all will be able to travel there soon"

Iuliia Dutchak

Sofa Hero

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"Hi there, I’m Anna, data analyst from Kyiv - the best coffee place in the world :)

Now I’m living in NL since war started. In my free time, I love to stargaze and learn ancient history. I value honesty in people.
I’m very proud of sofa end result."

Anna Viniichuk

Sofa Hero

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"I was born in Chernihiv region, but last more than 15 year Iived in Kharkiv

In NL I and my family from march 2022 because of war. 

I like coffet, young adult fantasy and embroidery.

The Social Sofa for me was a great process of uniting people and creating incredible masterpiece"

Olha Andrushchenko

Sofa Hero

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"I am Ukrainian, I live and work in Ukraine in the city of Dnipro, Dnipropetrovsk region.
Architect by profession, certified contractor, member of the National Union of Architects of Ukraine"

Volodymyr Postrygan

Sofa Hero


"Hi, I'm Anna Serebryanskaya 👋🏻I came from the city of Kramatorsk, Donetsk region (eastern Ukraine).
I am a psychologist by education, but found myself in the field of beauty.
I am a permanent makeup artist. In the Netherlands since April 2022, in love with this country 🥰 Happy that I contributed to this incredible beauty "Social Sofa"


Anna Serebryanskaya

Sofa Hero

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"I am Ukrainian and my hometown is Dnipro. I am an architect. I love Ukraine with all my heart. "

Iiulia Velykorodna

Sofa Hero

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"I lived in the Dnipro for many years.  I am the manager for purchases, for a long time I dance kizomba.  In the Netherlands, I stumbled when the war started, began to live anew.  But if not everyone wants to live in another country, then I figured out that it was not mine, so I could turn back through the river home, to Ukraine.  I’m happy at once, because I am at home.

The project Social sofa was very important for me, because it gives me a chance to touch to the region with I worked. For a person who had already summed up for a house, it was very nice chance!"

Viktoriia Sakharova

Sofa Hero



Sarah Angenent 

Social Sofa Zaanstad

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"I am an architect and designer from Ukraine. I was born in the city of Dnipro, and in March 2022 I came to the Netherlands with my two daughters because of the war.

I remember with great gratitude the time I spent working on the social sofa project, which gave me the opportunity to receive and to give support, to realize creative skills and to create something very meaningful for us all"

Nadiia Cherkasova


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"Originally I'm from Donetsk (Eastern of Ukraine) and lived in Kharkiv for the last 10 years.

I have been living in the Netherlands since April 2022.

This Social Sofa not only helped me cope with my emotions all this time, but also introduced me to incredible people!"

Victoria Dolgikh

Sofa Hero

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"I am Vitalina Clothing designer from Dnipro. Living in Zaandam since 2001 and working at Salvation Army  as a counselor and educational assistant for Ukrainian refugees. Ukrainian Sosial Sofa has brought many Ukrainian people together. I.m happy with this"

Vitalina Kozlenko

Sofa Hero

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"My two little daughters and I came to the Netherlands because of the war from Dnipro city. I am a teacher-philologist, but many years I devoted to a work at the tourism field, selling the cruises was my favourite thing to do.

My native city is Zaporizhzhia. Here in NL I found my inspiration in creation of smt new for me, making this Sofa was one of them. For me putting each stone on to our Vyshyvanka-Sofa was like a symbol of supporting, helping and protecting Ukraine"

Viktoriia Masnenko

Sofa Hero


"I’m a proud Ukrainian born and raised in Vinnytsia, Ukraine. I moved to the Netherlands 4 years ago"

Valeriia Kravchuk

Sofa Hero

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"I’m a tailor and social worker from Amsterdam. Born in the Ukrainian city of Dolina (small town between the Carpathians) Came to the Netherlands in 2001. Since then I have two places in the world that I can call home."

Maryana Mostova (right)

Sofa Hero

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"I was born in a very heart of Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital 🇺🇦. All my life is connected with this loved native city..I am a geographer by my education, and I  traveled a lot. Now because of war  I am temporarily in this beautiful and hospitable country 🇳🇱 with kind and sincere people. I am happy to leave a nice piece of love and memory about me and Ukraine  to them and everyone who is here.. Enjoy our amazing and bright Sofa Vyshyvanka! ❤️"


Oksana Kreminska

Sofa Hero

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Sofa Hero


"My city is Kherson.  I arrived in the Netherlands with my son in April 2022. With great gratitude to the Netherlands!"

Ivanova Oksana

Sofa Hero

Details of the Social Sofa Vyshyvanka

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