Tag Archives: clothing

Collector’s Edition: Oaxaca and Chiapas Textile Sale

Today I am offering 9 treasures from my collection for sale. These are pieces I have never or rarely worn. They live in my Durham, NC, closet. Many of you know that I am now walking 8,000 to 10,000 steps at least four times a week and have maintained size small for almost two years. These beautiful clothes are now way too big for me to wear. I’ve decided it is time for these pieces to be with others who appreciate them as much as I do.

To Buy: Send me an email — norma.schafer@icloud.com with your name, address, and item number. I will send you a PayPal invoice to pay with credit card. Please be sure to use the payment optionsending to family and friends.” Once I receive your funds, I will mail via USPS to anywhere in the USA.  I will add on $12 for mailing to the invoice. Thank you VERY much.

#1 Pencil huipil with fuchsine dye, 24-3/4″ wide x 37-1/2″ long, $325

#1 is from the Oaxaca coast in Santiago Ixtlayutla, near Pinotepa de Don Luis. It uses fuchsine dye, which locals call “cochineal” but it isn’t! It actually creates a more purple stain on cotton cloth that then bleeds intentionally into the base fabric. Fine silk thread is woven as the supplementary weft creating the figures in the cotton cloth. It is the silk that takes the dye after the piece is finished. The style is to dye and fold the cloth, soaking it in water so that the dye runs into patterns that are mirrored into the surrounding cloth. Those of us who know these textiles, covet and cherish them. The finishing joinery stitches on this one are very secure and fine.

All fuchsine-dyed garments are rare and collectible!

SOLD. #2. Fine gauze cotton blusa with fuchsine dye, 30″ wide x 27″ long, $245

Notes from Traditional Innovation in Oaxaca Textiles: There is another colour that can be found in several textiles from Oaxaca: fuchsia. The costume of men and women from the Mixtec town of Santiago Ixtayutla use locally-raised silk from San Mateo Peñasco, where silk is dyed with fuchsine, a magenta dye invented in mid-19th century which chemical composition is rosaniline hydrochloride. Since these dyes arrived in Mexico during the second half of the 19th c., weavers started using them: they were quick to use and cheap to obtain.

#3. Fuchsine shawl, 24″ wide x 84″ long including fringes, $285
SOLD. #4. Gauze Blouse from Venustiano Carranza, Chiapas, $145

SOLD. #4 is from the warm, humid coastal region of Venustiano Carranza, Chiapas, where lightweight hand-woven textiles are preferred. This is fine cotton woven on a back-strap loom. The colorful figures uses synthetically-dyed cotton in the supplementary weft. Measures 25″ wide x 25-1/2 long — size L-XL.

SOLD. #5. Olive and Rust Poncho, Chiapas, $165, one size

SOLD. #5 is woven on a back-strap loom in a Chiapas village of medium-weight cotton, hand-tied fringes. The design is incorporated in the weaving using the supplementary weft technique. It is not embroidered!

SOLD. #5, Poncho detail.
SOLD. #6. B&W Poncho, Oxchuc, Chiapas, $185, one-size

SOLD. #6 is a medium-weight cotton poncho with hot red needle work down the front to join the two pieces of cloth together. This is an unusual piece because of the texture of two different weaving styles used in the cloth (it does not have a seam). The front of the piece is shorter, hanging hip length and the back hangs longer to cover the rear!

SOLD. #6. B&W poncho detail.
SOLD. #7. Simply Beautiful Alderwood Dyed Poncho, $295, one size

SOLD. #7 was purchased from Remigio Mestas’ Oaxaca city shop Los Baules de Juana Cata. He is cited as a top authority on Oaxaca textiles, and offers only the finest woven and naturally dyed fabrics for sale, created by the best weavers. The dye is called Palo de Aguila, which translates to Alderwood, and is found in the Sierra Mixe of Oaxaca.

SOLD. #7 Alderwood-dyed poncho detail.
SOLD. #8 Indigo + Purple Snail Dye Oaxaca Blusa, 26-1/2″wide x 28-1/2″long, $285

SOLD. #8 is from the back-strap loom weaving village of Pinotepa de Don Luis. There is a very fine young weaver there named Sebastiana Guzman Hernandez. She was educated and worked as an engineer but preferred to weave and rescue her family’s indigenous traditions. I purchased this huipil from her workshop studio in the village. She dyes the indigo and buys the caracol purpura threads from the few local dyers who collect the rare purple snail dye from the Oaxaca coast.

SOLD. #9. Embroidered blouse, Chiapas, 21″ wide x 29″ long, $95

SOLD. #9 is a slinky blouse, machine embroidery on polyester, with see-through eyelet detail from Zinacantan, Chiapas. It is not hemmed because traditional women will tuck this inside their wrap-around skirts.

#9 Eyelet and embroidery detail.

Bring Mexico to Life: Shop Dresses, Tops, Aprons +

We need color in our lives right now. I dress up for Zoom and FaceTime calls. It feels good to wear something special and put on a little lipstick! When I go out to walk or to the market (always with mask and social distancing), I put on a colorful Mexican top or dress. Today, I’m meeting a friend for a picnic (six-to-eight feet distance) on a blanket at the North Carolina Museum of Art sculpture park. We then walk in the fresh air along the trails, mindful of others. I’ll wear one of my Oaxaca pieces today, too.

I have listed 23 items from my collection for sale. In addition to clothing, the selection includes napkins, woven bags, coin purses, tea towels.

To Buy: Send me an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com with your name, address, and item number. I will send you a PayPal invoice to pay with credit card. Once I receive your funds, I will mail via USPS to anywhere in the USA.  I will add on $12 for mailing to the invoice. Thank you VERY much.


#1. Jamiltepec, Oaxaca, blouse, back-strap loom + embroidered, size M, $55
SOLD. #2. Tlacolula-style apron, M-L, $45
SOLD. #3. San Bartolome Ayautla, Oaxaca, embroidered cotton blouse by Anacleta, M, $225
#4. Chenalho, Chiapas finest cotton embroidered blouse, $75
#5. Hot Pink Fancy Apron, size M-L, $85
#6. Bag L-6 and Bag R-6, $35 each, back-strap loom, Zinacantan, Chiapas
SOLD. #7. Fancy apron, San Miguel del Valle, embroidered, M-L, $85
#7. Apron, pocket detail
#8. Cotton tea towels/napkins, set of 2, $23
SOLD. #9. Dreamweavers Tixinda, blouse, indigo, cochineal, coyuchi, L-XL $250
#10. Elaborate Oaxaca Apron, Size M-L, embroidered, San Miguel del Valle, $125
#11. Indigo shoulder bag, hand-loomed, Chiapas, $45
#12. Chenalho, Chiapas embroidered blouse, fine cotton, M-L, $75
SOLD. #13. Tenejapa, Chiapas, back-strap loomed collector piece, $285 USD
#14. Handwoven, natural dyed wild marigold bag, Chiapas, $45
#15. Pom-Pom Capelet, wool and cotton, Chiapas, $125
#16. San Andres Larrainzar Chiapas cotton blouse, backstrap loom, M-L, $75
SOLD. #17. Set/6 handwoven cotton napkins w/macrame fringe, $60
SOLD. #18. Chiapas finest gauze blouse, with 3/4 sleeves, French knots, M-L, $55
#19. Chiapas woven coin purse w/zipper, your choice, $12 each
SOLD. #20. Chiapas gauze blouse, French knots, embroidered, 3/4 sleeve, M-L, $48
#20. Bodice, French knots detail
#21. Dreamweavers Txinda, Pinotepa de Don Luis, size L-XL, fine huipil, silk dyed w/rare purple snail caracol purpura, backstrap loom finely woven, $245
#22. Birds and Flowers, best embroidery on cotton by Anacleta, $165
#22, inside needlework — amazing, outstanding
SOLD. #23. Embroidered Apron, Teotitlan del Valle style, size M, $35

Mexico Indigenous Clothing Sale: Be a Fashionista!

As of Friday, morning, Oct. 11 — Still Available: #2, #3, #4, #6, #8, #9, #10, #13. Many choices! Time is ticking

I return to Oaxaca next week with a stopover in Mexico City to lead the Art History Tour focusing on the work of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Meanwhile, before I leave the USA, I usually go through my collection to review what I want to part with. Here is outstanding weaving and embroidery from all over Mexico — Oaxaca, Chiapas, Guadalajara. The 13-piece selection is below. Look carefully!

Note: All sizes are Large/Extra Large unless otherwise noted. Several are Collector Pieces: #1, #2, #3 and #13

To Buy: Send me an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com with your name, address, and item number. I will send you an invoice to pay with credit card. Once I receive your funds, I will mail via USPS to anywhere in the USA. Prices include mailing cost. Please buy and pay before Monday, October 14, 2019. This will give me enough time to pack and mail before I return to Mexico on October 16. Thank you VERY much.

SOLD. #1 Oaxaca Blue birds and flowers, fine embroidery on manta cotton, $235
#1 detail, cotton thread on manta cotton
#1 inside finish work is superb
#2 Black and Hot Pink Birds and Flowers, highest quality, $165
#2 detail — yellow is light from camera; natural manta cream cotton cloth
#2 inside fine stitching detail
#3 Pinotepa de Don Luis,Oaxaca back-strap loom cotton w/ rare Caracol Purple Snail, $195
#4 Chiapas blouse, embroidered, 3/4 sleeve, $65
#4 embroidery detail with French knots, Size Medium
SOLD. #5 Chiapas finest blouse, with 3/4 sleeves, French knots, $65
#5 detail, French knots, embroidery, Size Medium
SOLD. #6 Tlahuitoltepec, Oaxaca, cotton blusa, machine embroidered, $65
SOLD. #6, bodice detail
#6 back detail
SOLD. #7 Chiapas backstrap loom fine cotton blouse, $65, Size Medium
#7 detail, the design is in the weaving!
#8 Chiapas, long tunic, size medium, back strap loom, $65
#8 bodice detail, size Medium, design is integrated into weaving
#9 Fancy Chiapas poncho, back-strap loom, magenta with gold threads, $65
#10 PomPom Capelet — Poncho, wool, back-strap loom, $95
#11 Oaxaca Coast, Jamiltepec Blouse, backstrap loom+embroidered, $55
SOLD. #12 Guadalajara Needlepoint Blouse, $85
#13 Chiapas Backstrap Loom + Embroidered Tenejapa Poncho, $235 –Collector’s Piece
#13 Tenejapa poncho detail

Clearance Sale for Discontinued Zayzelle Dresses

Four years ago, I designed this dress, made a pattern and started sewing. In 2018, I created a brand called Zayzelle, opened an online shop, and started making and selling the dress. I sewed the same pattern in many fabrics. I employed my friend Rosario in Teotitlan del Valle to help me. What I discovered is that building a fashion brand takes time and takes me away from Oaxaca Cultural Navigator. So, I closed the store.

Sizes and Dimensions: The dresses are all one size and will fit size large to extra-large. All have similar dimensions: 27″ wide seam-to-seam, 43″ long from the back neck opening to hem, and a 26″ sleeve that can be rolled up. This is easy dressing, unstructured, comfortable style with a relaxed drape.

Every garment is handmade. All the fabrics are fine linen or cotton. The cloth determines the look. Deep patch pockets will hold keys, cell phone, change purse or wallet, cosmetics. Finished French seams guarantee they will never unravel! Easy to care for: wash on delicate setting in the machine and hang to dry. Iron if you wish.

I have priced these dresses to sell. They are 50-75% off of the original price. Price includes USPS mail to anywhere in the USA. Mailing to Canada is extra.

How to Buy: send me an email at norma.schafer@icloud.com and I will send you an invoice to pay with credit card. Please include the Dress Number, your name, and mailing address. Thank you. I return to Mexico on October 16. All orders must be received and paid for by October 10. I will mail by October 12.

Two dresses remain: Dress #2 and Dress #9. Help me sell out!

If you don’t like the price, make an offer!

Dress #2, Periwinkle and Steel Gray Stripe Cotton Dress, lovely drape, $69.95
Detail, Dress #2 with patch pocket
Dress #9, Buttercup yellow, pale and creamy, best quality linen, $43.95
Dress #9, top-stitched pocket detail
SOLD. Dress #1: Gray and white cotton seersucker, $69.95
Dress #1 detail: top-stitched pocket

Dress #2, Periwinkle and Gray Stripe Cotton Dress, $69.95
Dress #2, pocket detail
Dress #3, Mexican Manta (Natural) Cotton, soft and cozy, $39.95 (was $95)
Dress #3, pocket detail
SOLD. Dress #4, Denim Dress, easy-to-wear, $69.95
Dress #4 Detail with top-stitched pocket
SOLD. Dress #5, Caramel brown handkerchief linen, chambray, finest quality, $69.95
Dress #5, detail top-stitched pocket
SOLD. Dress #6, sleek midnight blue dress, slinky rayon, $79.95
Dress #6, detail of top-stitched pocket
SOLD. Dress #7, Gray Chambray Handkerchief Linen, finest quality, $79.95
Dress #7, pocket detail, top-stitching
SOLD. Dress #8, Natural Manta Cotton, $39.95
Dress #8 detail with top-stitched pocket

Yes! Textiles in Tirana, Albania

I´m in Eastern Europe, starting out along the southern Adriatic Coast of Albania in the capitol city of Tirana. I’m on a cultural tour of the region that has no particular focus, with a friend who needed a roommate. It would never have occured to me to put this on a travel bucket list, but I´m glad I did.

I call this Eastern Europe because it was once part of the Communist bloc pre-Gorbachev, that turned it’s loyalties to China and Mao, a stricter version communism after Glasnost.

Marble bust, Greek style

This is a developing country. It broke its shackles of repression after more than 30 years of isolation, forced labor camps, concentration camps, and extermination of liberal opposition. This is a city of bunkers built between 1960´s and 1980´s out of paranoid fear of invasion by foreign powers. By 1983, over 173,000 bunkers were built. Tirana today dedicated two to the martyrs who died in opposition, a memorial to a holocaust.

Obsolète; Communist era military buttons

With this in mind, the group I´m traveling with visited the National History Museum. The galleries are devoted to Albania history with ties to Greece, Italy, Macedonia and the Ottoman Empire. Artifacts, including marble busts, bronze weapons and jewelry from archeological sites are on display here.

Goddess Appolonia

An entire gallery is devoted to remembering those who suffered and died under the regime of Enver Hoxha. Here, I cried. This is fresh history. Recent history. Living history. And politics here is everywhere.

Wool apron with embroidered embellishment

Albanians love Americans. Woodrow Wilson said Albania should be independent after the Balkans were divided after WWI. In 2007, George W. Bush was the first US president to visit here. Two young students told me it is their dream to go to America. It is heartwarming to be welcomed so enthusiastically by people we meet. The history is dark, yet there is a sunrise to the east in the second poorest (only to Kosovo) country in Europe.

Heavy wool coat with appliqué

There is a small gift shop at National History Museum. It is filled mostly with vintage textiles that are 60 to 80 years old. The cloth is handwoven wool or cotton, embellished with embroidery or appliqué. The symbol of the country, the double-headed eagle, reminds me of some of the indigenous regions of Oaxaca where the same iconography is central to the language of cloth.

Rugs at the New Market, new, I think

I see weaving patterns that look like Zapotec rugs. I see tiny joining stitches that looks like Mexican randa. I see belts woven on backstrap looms embellished with fringed and wrapped tassels. I see the creativity of a people who desired to adorn themselves in beauty, a consistent them worldwide.

Vintage belts in the museum store

There are mostly European visitors here in this city of one million people, in this country of three million. We were told that there are six million visitors here annually now and the country is struggling to keep up with tourism infrastructure. The time to come here is now!

The tiniest stitches on traditional blouse

I am meandering on my own after the museum. I want to go to New Market and head in the direction a museum guard points me to. At a corner, I hesitate. I ask two young people where to find it.

Casey and Ben, Albanian college students, and me

That’s how I meet Casey and Ben. They speak English. I ask them if they will be my guide for the afternoon. They have free time. They are university students starting their first year, and classes are delayed because the registration system is kerfluffled. Along the way they tell me that young people don’t stay here. There is huge unemployment and the jobs are in Italy or Germany. Their dream is to go to the US. They are delighted to help me and I am delighted to give them each 500 Lek, about $5 USD each. Lucky us!

This is an olive-growing country — delicious!

After New Market, I continue on my own to Oda Restaurant and have a traditional Albanian lunch of stuffed eggplant with veggies, corn bread and beer. Then, back to Hotel Rogner for a rest.

Clay pots to store and cook with

Tomorrow, we are off to Montenegro. Who knows what I’ll find there!

Tasty beer at Oda Restaurant