Imagine! A 4-day hands-on weaving workshop in Teotitlan del Valle, plus a 1-day cooking class, for a total of 5 days and 6 nights! For beginners and experienced textile and fiber artists and designers, or anyone who wants to know more about tapestry weaving.
Includes 22 hours of instruction, 6 nights lodging, 6 breakfasts, AND a traditional Zapotec cooking class with lunch. Perfect for fiber artists, weavers, knitters, natural dye aficionados, artists, teachers. A great shared experience for parents and children.
- Arrive Friday, August 2 — participate in the weaving workshop from Saturday, August 3 through Tuesday, August 6, with master weaver Federico Chavez Sosa and his wife Dolores Santiago Arrellanas.
Then, take a traditional Zapotec cooking class with one of Oaxaca’s premiere cooking teachers — fun, flavorful and hands-on!
- Cooking Class, Wednesday, August 7.
- Depart Thursday, August 8.
- The workshop was an incredible program. I have enjoyed the process! Thank you very much for your hospitality and for sharing your talent, knowledge and wonderful teaching. I would recommend this program to any friend. This has been an unforgettable week.” –Giovanna Balarezo, New York City
Tuition is $995 per person, including lodging (double occupancy), most meals, and cooking class. Workshop is limited to 6 participants. For a single room with private bath, add $150 for a total of $1,145.
“Dancing on the Loom” was a marvelous experience; not only did I learn the essentials of weaving and dyeing, but I have the opportunity to see people engaging in the building of a sustainable production.” — Akilah Zuberi, Philadelphia
Not only will you learn the way Zapotecs have been weaving for over 500 years, and dyeing for millenia, you will be experiencing village life through a very unique and personal perspective.
The Chavez Santiago Family Weavers has traveled and exhibited throughout the United States, are in the permanent collections of galleries, museums and artists, including the Snite Museum of Art at the University of Notre Dame. They have exhibited and lectured widely, including at the National Museum of Mexican Art (Chicago), the San Jose (CA) Quilt and Textile Museum, the American Tapestry Alliance, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Purdue University, and the University of California at Santa Cruz.
Who Should Attend: Weavers, artists, knitters, textile designers, teachers, university students, anyone interested in weaving and natural dyeing techniques, and sustaining indigenous art forms using traditional methods.
Level of Experience Necessary: These are small group, hands-on workshops that can accommodate varying levels of ability, from beginner to advanced student. Because the size of each group is limited, you will receive individualized instruction and coaching from the master weaving family of Federico Chavez Sosa. More experienced weavers can create more complex projects.
Participants will have a personal loom for the session. The loom will be dressed (warped) and ready for you to begin weaving upon arrival. Materials include your choice of naturally dyed wool yarn from which you will weave a sampler textile that can be used as a wall hanging, pillow cover, or form the body of a purse or shoulder bag. You will select the wool from colors dyed with pomegranates, pecans, mosses, indigo, and cochineal. Our participants have created amazing textiles that range from 18 inches to 30 inches in length.
What You Will Learn:
- Traditional Zapotec weaving techniques, patterns and motifs that produce squares, stripes, diagonals, circles and color gradations;
- Use of the two-harness pedal loom and shuttles;
- Practice weaving simple or more complex patterns, depending upon your level of experience;
- The cultural history of rug weaving in Teotitlan, ancient wool preparation techniques, natural dyeing methods, and how to discern synthetic dye use
- Participate in natural dyeing demonstrations to see how the range and variety of color comes from native plant materials;
- Complete a finished textile: cut the sample tapestry from the loom, clean the wool tapestry, twist and tie the fringes; and
- Work under the expert guidance of weavers who have created extraordinary textiles for generations.
Day 1: Arrive and settle in to your Bed and Breakfast lodge. Light supper included.
Weaving Workshop: Days 2-5, 9:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Day 2: Arrive at the Chavez Santiago Family Weavers for an orientation and demonstration of Zapotec weaving patterns and techniques to create squares, stripes, diagonals and circles. Choose your loom and select the colors for your tapestry. Prepare the bobbins. Begin your project. (Breakfast and dinner included. Lunch on your own.)
Days 3-4-5: Participate in demonstrations and then practice using the two-harness pedal loom using a variety of shuttles to make more complex patterns and greater variety of colors, experiment with using the equipment on your own, see dyeing demonstration using cochineal, indigo, and wild marigold (pericone). Learn how to count threads to create a circle or square within the overall design. Finish off your piece by cutting it off the loom, rolling and tying fringes.
Day 6: After breakfast, walk around the block to the kitchen of the famed cooking teacher Reyna Mendoza Ruiz. You’ll go to the market with her, select the food you will prepare, join her in her kitchen for all the preparations, then enjoy what you have cooked for comida!
Day 7: Depart for the airport and home after breakfast, or extend your stay in Teotitlan del Valle or Oaxaca city.
What Is Included:
- All weaving equipment and supplies to create a finished wool tapestry sampler that is approximately 18” wide by 24” long
- 22+ hours of supervised instruction in English
- An educational reference notebook of workshop materials
- 6 nights lodging (double occupancy) with daily breakfast in Teotitlan del Valle at family-operated posada/bed and breakfast within easy walking distance of the weaving studio
Cost for the 6 Night/7-Day Program is $995 USD per person, double occupancy. Add $150 for single room with private bath, for $1,145.
Option 1: Add-on pre- or post-workshop nights. $55 per night per person in Teotitlan del Valle. $125 per night per person per night in Oaxaca city (includes breakfast).
How to Register: A $500 USD deposit is required to reserve your space. Tell us you are ready to register and we will send you a PayPal invoice. Payment is only accepted with PayPal.
Final payment of the balance is due 45 days before the start day of the workshop. If the final balance is not paid by then, we reserve the right to treat the reservation as cancelled and no refunds are offered. Any registrations made within 60 days of the workshop start date must be paid in full at the time of registration.
Cancellations and Refunds
If cancellation is necessary, deposits are refundable, as follows:cancellations must be made in writing by email.
Deposits may be refunded:
- up to 60 days before the workshop start date, 50% of the deposit will be refunded.
- After that, deposits are not refundable.
- If cancellation is necessary, you may apply the deposit to a future workshop scheduled in the same calendar year or transfer your registration to another person.
- We reserve the right to cancel or reschedule workshops, in which case you may choose a 100% refund or to apply the tuition to a future workshop.
We prefer payment with PayPal. See “Register Today” for form and procedures. We will send you a PayPal invoice when you tell us you are ready to register.
What Is NOT Included:
- Transportation in/to Mexico, Oaxaca and Teotitlan
- Local transportation costs (bus, taxi, collectivo)
- Gratuities and fees
- Trip insurance, medical expenses, hospitalization, and other fees
- Lunches and dinners (unless noted in the itinerary), snacks, liquor/alcoholic beverages
- Optional afternoon side trips and excursions
Upon registration for the workshop, we will provide you with:
- Transportation options to get from the Oaxaca airport to the city and to Teotitlan del Valle and your bed and breakfast
- A self-guided tour map of Teotitlan del Valle
- How to get from the airport to the village
- A seasonal packing list, and travel tips to make your journey easier and fun
Note: Zapotec weavers use the pedal loom, which they stand at to work. People who have difficulty standing for any period of time, or who have back problems are discouraged from attending. Many of Teotitlan’s streets and alleyways are cobblestone and/or dirt, with many uneven surfaces. It is a several block walk between lodging options and the weaving workshop. Please bring sturdy, comfortable walking shoes.
U.S. Citizens traveling to Mexico are required to carry a current passport, valid for at least three months after your re-entry to the U.S. It is your responsibility to obtain proper documentation. If you are not a U.S. Citizen, contact the Mexican embassy, consulate or national airline of Mexico for entry requirements.
Please consider purchasing travel insurance. We can arrange to purchase trip insurance for you and include this in your final statement. Let us know if you would like a quote. The price is based on your age and length of stay in Mexico. In the event of an emergency or natural disaster caused beyond our control, trip insurance will cover any unexpected expenses.
Questions? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org