Monthly Archives: October 2010

Textile Studio Adventure in Richmond, Virginia

Our friend Andrea Donnelly opened her textile design studio in Richmond, Virginia, soon after graduating with an MFA from Virginia Commonwealth University.  We first met her four years ago while she was finishing up her undergraduate degree from the College of Textiles and Design at North Carolina State University.  Four years in the life of a creative 27 year old is a big chunk of time.  Back then, in 2006, Eric Chavez Santiago and his father Federico Chavez Sosa were invited to teach a master class at NC State.  That’s when Eric met Andrea.  The following summer, she took up residence in the village of Teotitlan del Valle to study natural dyes and weaving techniques with the family.  Today, Little Fool Textiles is a reality.  See


Andrea shows Eric and Janet how she paints the warp


Andrea’s studio is on North 26th St. in an old warehouse district.  She shares the studio space with a group of other artists who also graduated from VCU: a glassblower, a photographer, and a painter.

She is employing a faux ikat technique of painting the warp threads with dye.  The result is a subtle texture and design in the fabric after she weaves it.  The work is just exquisite.

When Andrea started her design business, she decided to name it Little Fool Textiles because that’s what her dad always called her when she was a little girl.  It’s a term of endearment that has stuck!

Andrea uses a fine cotton and her 100% cotton scarves and shawls are airy, feathery, and drape beautifully.  She demonstrated how to wrap a Turkish shawl that keeps the neck warm but gives a feeling of elegance.  In the photo above, Eric, who weaves with naturally dyed wool, examines the delicacy of the material.

This scarf is a play of blue on a white warp painted with black.  You can see the delicate pattern, bold ikat-type zags and zigs, and the symmetry of balance in the sections.  It is a beauty when it is wrapped around shoulders.


Andrea models Pixels and Graphs


Can you see the yellow, green and blue splotches that Andrea has painted on the warp threads of this scarf.  It is a pattern of positive and negative that is a definite statement.


Andrea and Jordan model Pixels and Clouds

Eric and Andrea reminisce about when they first met in North Carolina and the experience they shared together while Andrea was doing the summer externship in Eric’s village.  Andrea shows Eric the purse she still uses that he wove and gave her years ago.  It is great to be part of the creative development of Eric and Andrea as they progress in their lives and careers.

Staying connected through shared memories


Chistes y Chismosos: Is This Like Shopping in Atzompa?

When I go to Oaxaca what do I want to do first?  You guessed it.  Hit the streets and fill my eyes with the splendor of all the art and artisanry that Oaxaca has to offer.  I can’t get enough of the tactile and visual pleasure I derive from exploring shops, street arcades, and village markets.  Get me a taxi to Atzompa to explore the folk art pottery of fanciful figures painted with garish, glorious primary colors and to me, this is heaven.

Turn about is fair play.  Or, does my experience equate with Eric’s, Janet’s and Elsa’s desire to immediately get to Target, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, the Mall at Streets at Southpoint, and the recently opened Nordstrom Rack?  It is as if they have been deprived of any and all semblance of shopping as we know it in the United States.  Jeans, tennis shoes, kitchen gadgets, stainless steel cookware, designer label discount sweaters, perfume, make-up, dresses, wristwatches, underwear, kitchen dishtowels are stuffed into plastic bags and piled high in the back seat of my second car that I have lent them this week.  And, you should see the bedroom!  I wonder how the 50 lb. luggage limit will accommodate all this.

This is a shopping marathon.  On Sunday, they left the house at 10 a.m. and returned at 7:30 p.m.  Yesterday, Monday, they left the house at 10 a.m. and returned just before 10:30 p.m.  They out-do me, and when I go to Oaxaca I can disappear for hours on end into the depths of handwoven textiles from Juchitan, the Mixe and Mixteca regions of Oaxaca and our local villages.  Is it the same?  I can hear Federico whisper in my ear:  Why not?

The difference between common and exotic is derived from our own experience, cultural awareness and origins.  Am I to say how my love of pottery, art, textiles, alebrijes, and mole is more important and valuable than their love for good quality and affordable clothing?  Eric tells me that these good that we are so used to here in the U.S. can cost twice or three times more in Oaxaca IF they can find them.  So, go figure.  And, Who am I to say?  I’m just happy they are having fun.

Call for Help: Oaxaca Textile Museum is Collection Center for Mudslide Victims

Dear Friends:  If you are traveling to Oaxaca any time soon, please take an extra suitcase and bring along any of these necessary supplies, clothing, and food that you can donate to help the people of the Mixe region as they recover from the devasting mudslides.  Contact the Museo Textil de Oaxaca when you arrive. (See English translation below.)  Thank you, Norma

¡Juntemos esfuerzos ante la Tragedia de las Comunidades de la Región Mixe.!

El MTO es Centro de  Acopio Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca a 01 de octubre del 2010

A las Organizaciones e Instituciones, A las ciudadanas y ciudadanos de Oaxaca.


Ante la grave situación que vive la población de las comunidades mixes de nuestro estado, estamos preocupados y buscamos facilitar que la ayuda llegue de manera directa y lo más pronto posible.

Para ello el Museo Textil de Oaxaca es centro de Acopio para recibir la ayuda de emergencia que requieren nuestras hermanas y hermanos mixes.

DATOS DEL CENTRO DE ACOPIO Museo Textil de Oaxaca, Hidalgo 917 Esq. Fiallo Col. Centro, Oaxaca, Oaxaca.C.P. 68000 Teléfono: 5011104 Ext.104

De antemano agradecemos su  solidaridad.



  • Toallas femeninas
  • Tabcin
  • Torundas de algodón
  • Alcohol
  • Venda elástica
  • Gasa esterilizada
  • Apósitos
  • Pepto- Bismol
  • Merthiolate
  • Isodine
  • Cinta Microporosa
  • Lomotil loperamida
  • Tela adhesiva
  • Agua oxigenada
  • Jabon
  • Pasta de Dientes
  • Cepillos Dentales
  • Estropajos


  • Palas
  • Picos
  • Lazos  y cuerdas
  • Impermeables
  • Lámparas y Pilas
  • Botas de hule No. 26-28
  • Hules tipo lona


  • Pañales desechables
  • Aceite
  • Calcetas y calcetines.
  • Leche en polvo nido +1, +2 +5
  • Harina de arroz
  • Leche Nan 1
  • Pomada de lassar (capent y bhepantene)

mamelucos, chamarras, cobijitas

Playeras y sueteres

  • Colchonetas
  • Biberones
  • Calzados
  • Guantes
  • Cepillo dental


  • Azúcar
  • Aceite
  • Frijoles enlatados
  • Maseca
  • Café
  • Atún
  • Sardina
  • Leche en polvo
  • Te
  • Agua embotellada
  • Vasos, platos y tazas de plástico
  • Cerillos
  • Arroz
  • Sopa  (No instantánea).


  • Chamarras
  • Suéter
  • Pantalones
  • Camisas
  • Zapatos y tenis
  • Pants
  • Rebozos
  • Calcetas y calcetines
  • Gorros y guantes


  • Cobijas
  • Sabanas
  • Colchonetas
  • Rebozos
  • Petates
  • Almohadas
  • Sleeping Bag

Let us join efforts with the Tragedy of the Communities of the Mixe Region! The Museo Textil de Oaxaca is Collection Center in Oaxaca de Juárez, Oaxaca on October 1, 2010

To all  Organizations and Institutions, and the citizens of Oaxaca:

Dear  Friends:

Given the serious situation facing the population of the Mixe communities of our state, we are concerned and we are providing the resources and support so that  help arrives directly and as soon as possible.

For this, the Textile Museum of  Oaxaca will be the collection center to receive emergency assistance needed by our Mixe sisters and brothers.

Museo Textil de Oaxaca
Corner of Fiallo Hidalgo 917 Col. Centro, Oaxaca, Oaxaca.
Č.p. 68000,  Phone: 5011104 Ext.104

We appreciate your solidarity and support.



· Feminine pads
· Cotton swabs
· Alcohol

· Elastic   Sterile gauze pads
· Dressings
· Pepto-Bismol
· Merthiolate
· Iodine
· Surgical tape/bandaids
· Lomotil Loperamide
· Adhesive tape

• Oxygenated Water
Black soap
· Tooth paste and tooth brushes
· Medical/surgical pads

· Palas
· Picos
· Loops and strings
· Waterproof Lamps and Batteries
· Boots Rubber No. 26-28
Canvas tarps

· Diapers
· Oils
· Slippers and socks
· Milk powder nest 1, 2 5
· Rice flour
· Milk Nan 1
· Lassar Ointment (Carpenter and bhepantene)
Rompers, sleepers, jackets, blankets
Shirts and sweaters
· Mats
· Bottles
· Shoes
· Gloves
· Toothbrushes

• Sugar
· Oil
· Canned beans
· Maseca
· Coffee
· Tuna
· Sardines
· Milk powder
· Tea

• Bottled Water
· Cups, plates and plastic cups
· Matches
· Rice
· Soup (not instant).

· Jackets
· Sweaters
· Pants
· Shirts
· Shoes and tennis shoes
· Pants
· Shawls and scarves
· Socks
· Hats and gloves
· Blankets
· Sheets
· Mats
· Shawls and scarves
· Backpacks
· Pillows
· Sleeping Bag