August 11, 2008. My right foot goes on the right pedal, and my left foot goes into position behind my right foot, a dance of balance and strength. This presses one harness down so I can get the shuttle through the loom to bring my yarn across between the heddles. Then, I do the same dance with my left foot and left pedal, back and forth, back and forth. We are six people dancing on our looms, none of us synchronized. We each have our own looms at which to work. We have chosen our individual color palate from the hundreds of hanks of naturally dyed yarn that hang on the second floor of the Chavez workshop, and as we manipulate the warp and weft of the loom, we each have a unique pattern and variation that we are experimenting with. None of the people attending this workshop are experienced, yet by the end of the first day they have achieved several inches of beautifully woven cloth. Federico and Janet are constantly giving each individualized attention to help in the learning process, and soon there is a rhythm to the work, an exchange of ideas, laughter, experience.
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Norma Writes for Selvedge Magazine Issues #89 + #109
Creating Connection and Meaning between travelers and with indigenous artisans. Meet makers where they live and work. Join small groups of like-minded explorers. Go deep into remote villages. Gain insights. Support cultural heritage and sustainable traditions ie. hand weaving and natural dyeing. Create value and memories. Enjoy hands-on experiences. Make a difference.
What is a Study Tour: Our programs are designed as learning experiences, and as such we talk with makers about how and why they create, what is meaningful to them in their designs, the ancient history of patterning and design, use of color, tradition and innovation, values and cultural continuity, and the social context within which they work. First and foremost, we are educators. Norma worked in top US universities for over 35 years and Eric founded the education department at Oaxaca’s textile museum. We create connection and help artisans reach people who value them and their work.
Why We Left, Expat Anthology: Norma’s Personal Essay
We Contribute Two Chapters!
Meet Makers. Make a DifferenceOaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC has offered programs in Mexico since 2006. We have over 30 years of university, textile and artisan development experience. See About Us.
Programs can be scheduled to meet your independent travel plans. Send us your available dates.
Designers, retailers, wholesalers, curators, universities and others come to us to develop artisan relationships, customized itineraries, study abroad programs, meetings and conferences. It's our pleasure to make arrangements.
Select Clients *Abeja Boutique, Houston *Selvedge Magazine-London, UK *Esprit Travel and Tours *Penland School of Crafts *North Carolina State University *WARP Weave a Real Peace *Methodist University *MINNA-Goods *Smockingbird Kids *MINNA *University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Tell us how we can put a program together for you! Send an email firstname.lastname@example.org
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