Category Archives: Oaxaca Mexico art and culture

Virtual Trunk Show: 16 Oaxaca + Chiapas Huipiles

Before I left Oaxaca in August to return to New Mexico (to pack, make the mortgage deadline, move, get cataract surgery, unpack, get settled), I went through my collection of back-strap loomed dresses and blouses (huipiles and blusas) in my Teotitlan del Valle casita and made some hard decisions about what to sell. I did this based on 1) the size I was when I bought them, 2) the size I am now, 3) if I ever wore them, 4) if I ever will wear them, and 5) their rarity. Many pieces ARE RARE. Not surprisingly, many still have their tags on them, and all are in pristine condition. Another factor for this sale now is that I FINALLY got fiber internet connection yesterday to my house after waiting for months. So, it’s much easier for me to write and post on my computer rather than using the slow-as-molasses, funky roaming service on my iPhone. Supply chain and labor scarcity has set me back in many ways. I also want you to know that the prices for these huipiles are about what they would cost if purchased directly from the maker. Some are deeply reduced and I’m happy to take a loss. I just have to pare down my collection. I decided recently that I was not going to start a textile museum and best they go to friends, acquaintances, and followers who appreciate these handmade pieces as much as I do. That’s the story!

How to Buy: Send an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com and tell me the item(s) you want to purchase by number, your email, your mailing address and which payment method you prefer: 1) Zelle bank transfer with no service fee; 2) Venmo or 3) PayPal each with a 3% service fee. I will send you a request for funds and then add on a flat rate $14 mailing fee. Happy to combine shipping. Thank you.

SOLD. #1. This creamy white pullover blusa is a perfect pair-up with slacks or jeans. Wear it in winter over a cozy T to add some pizzaz to your style. This is handwoven on the back strap loom by the Oaxaca Amusgo people. The top has crotchet edging around the bodice, seams, and sleeves. Measures a drapy 40″ wide x 22″ long. $165.

#2. From the famous workshop of designer Alberto Lopez Gomez, Aldama, Chiapas (remember, he was invited to NYC fashion week and has exhibited all over Europe). This is a densely woven back strap loomed blusa in a dusty rose on white. All the patterning in the cloth is done with the supplementary weft technique, which means it is woven into the cloth as the weaver progresses, taking months to make. Note: This is NOT embroidered! Measures 23″ wide x 24″ long. You can have this at cost: $385.

SOLD. #3. This is a lovely short huipil measuring 29″ wide x 29″ long, handwoven on the back strap loom in Pinotepa de Don Luis on the Oaxaca coast, where master weavers work in natural dyes. This one is dyed with the shell of the jicara gourd and the designs are created using the rare caracol purpura purple snail, almost extinct. $295.

#4. The Amusgo people are some of the finest weavers in Oaxaca. This is a collector’s piece, rare, dyed with indigo and native brown cotton in the Guerrero village of Xochistlahuaca. Measures 32″ wide x 40″ long. Priced at $595.

#5. I spotted this beauty in the corner of a cooperative in San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas. It is dyed with cochineal and alderwood. Very special because it is a contemporary adaptation of the traditional huipil from San Juan Cancuc, located far into the mountains and difficult to get to. Note the hand-tied fringes at the hem and embroidered detail on the bodfice. Size small. Measures 21″ wide x 36″ long. $225.

SOLD. #6. Another Pinotepa de Don Luis beauty — a very fine indigo and coyuchi (native brown Oaxaca cotton that is pre-Hispanic in origin) huipil that is 29″ wide x 42″ long. $345. This comes from the Tixinda cooperative whose members include Don Habacuc who goes to the coast to harvest the rare purple snail.

SOLD #7. A floral masterpiece. From the Amusgo community in Guerrero state just across the Oaxaca border to the north along the Pacific coast, comes this huipil from the Flor de las Llanuras cooperative. This is a finely woven gauze piece that is unusual in its subtlety of color and masterful weaving. Measures 25″ wide x 41″ long. $495.

SOLD. #8. Originating from a famous cooperative in San Juan Colorado, this traditional huipil features all natural dyes on hand-spun native cotton. The dyes include nanche (a local fruit) and iron oxide. Measures 27″ wide x 44″ long. $185.

#9. Far south on the coast of Oaxaca is the small fishing village of San Mateo del Mar near the Isthmus of Tehuantepec. The few weaving families remaining are masterful interpreters of sealife, flora and fauna of the region. This one is made by the most famous weaver, Francisca Palafox Heran, and her iinitials are woven into the bodice of the cloth. For the discerning collector among us! It very fine cotton woven on the back strap loom, dyed with alderwood and indigo. Measures 24″ wide x 38″ long. $395.

#10. Another blue and white beauty from San Mateo del Mar, woven by one of Francisca’s family members. Measures 25″ wide x 42″ long. $295.

SOLD. #11. Amusgo white gauze huipil, measures 30″ wide x 40″ long. See the fine detail of the patterning in the cloth — a weaving technique called supplementary weft. White on white is a rarity to find. $285.

#12. Blue indigo and coyuchi native brown cotton huipil from Las Sanjuaneras cooperative in San Juan Colorado. These women are spectacular weavers. Measures 31″ wide x 34″ long. $225.

SOLD. #13. Pinotepa de Don Luis huipil woven with threads dyed with rare purple snail called caracol purpura and native brown coyuchi cotton. The purple dye is rare and on the verge of extinction. Measures 25″ wide x 36″ long. $375.

SOLD. #14. Las Sanjuaneras indigo, mahogany bark, and native white cotton huipil from San Juan Colorado. Measures 30″ wide x 37″ long. Graceful and flowing. $265.

SOLD. #15. Amusgo beige huipil, fine details in the supplementary weft weaving, measures 31″ wide x 42″ long and priced to sell at $195.

SOLD. #16. Weavers and dyers are experimenting (a very good thing for innovation), and they have come up with a color-fast raw indigo dye that comes out a muted green/blue. This one has subtle strips and is embellished with caracol purpura purple snail threads that depict traditional designs found in San Juan Colorado. Measures 33″ wide x 31″ long. $285.

In the next weeks, I’ll be looking through my boxes and featuring a few more huipiles, plus an array of beautiful shawls and scarves — perfect adornment for chillier weather coming on. Or use these for table runners, I’ve never been able to say NO to a beautiful textile or to supporting the weavers who need our patronage. Plus, Day of the Dead is coming up and I have masks, carvings, and sculpture from Mexico that I’ll be listing, too. Be on the alert!

Quick Sale: Greca Rug + 2 Pillows

SOLD #1 Muy Suavecita Grecas Rug or Blanket—$187

This textile was woven by 90+ year old Secundino in the old Teotitlan Zapotec style. He washed the yarn in the river with amole, a root used for soap. He weaves on the treadle loom. This is two matching pieces sewn together just like the old days. It’s much softer and lighter weight than a rug. More suited, I think for the foot of the bed, back of a chair or sofa. All natural sheep wool. Very, very soft. A few small moth holes, but they don’t detract from the overall beauty or functionality. 61×64” Hand twisted fringes. BTW, for years Secundino led all the village parades, playing the ancient Zapotec flute.

#2. Pillow Pair from Chiapas, $195

These pillows are handwoven on the backstrap loom of the finest cotton in a village outside of San Cristobal de las Casas. The pattern is grey on white using the supplementary weft technique, which means it is part of the weaving. This is NOT embroidered. From the premiere cooperative Jolom Mayaetik. New, never used. Does not include pillow forms. Price is for the pair. Two tassle tie closures on back; measures 12” x19”

HOW TO BUY Send an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com and tell me the item(s) you want to purchase by number, your email, your mailing address and which payment method you prefer: 1) Zelle bank transfer with no service fee; 2) Venmo or 3) PayPal each with a 3% service fee. I will then add on a flat rate $14 mailing fee for the pillows and $23 for the throw Happy to combine shipping. Thank you.

Joyas: Jewelry for Sale from Oaxaca and Chiapas

Joyas is the Spanish word for jewels. We often hear the word joyeria, which means jewelry. Today the selection includes vintage and contemporary jewelry made from pompoms, shells and seeds, fine Italian beads, sterling silver, and copper —necklaces and bangles. I’m also starting off with two great Oaxaca market baskets in dramatic black and white.

How to Buy: send an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com and tell me the item(s) you want to purchase by number, your email, your mailing address and which payment method you prefer: 1) Zelle bank transfer with no service fee; 2) Venmo or 3) PayPal each with a 3% service fee. I will then add on a flat rate $14 mailing fee. Happy to combine shipping. Thank you.

#1 on left is Super Grande tote bag, sturdy woven plastic, $73, 17×17” and SOLD #2 Medio on right is $58, 17” wide x 13” tall.
#3. Coconut shell and coffee bean necklace, adjustable length. $39
#4. Red Dazzle Pom Pom Necklace, adjustable length. From the best maker in Chiapas! $54
#5. Sterling Silver Vintage Beads necklace. Handmade beads.These have to be 8-10 mm in diameter! Made in Mexico. 24” long. $166
#6. handwoven natural palm fiber earrings, 3-1/2” long $44
#7. Confetti necklace, Italian glass beads, adjustable length. $76
#8. Black clay pearl necklace from San Bartolo Coyotepec with carved bauble drop. Asymmetry adds stylish statement. 21” long. $82
#9. Star power! 2-1/2 x 2-1/2” hand painted earrings by Aureliano Lorenzo. $43

#10. Set of 3 bangles, 2 are copper and one is sterling silver, from Taxco. Interior circumference is 7-1/2” — I have not polished these so you can see the beautiful patina of age. Mix and match and rearrange. $165 for all three.

#11. Vintage Mexican sterling silver bead necklace, 16” long. I estimate the bead size at 4mm. $67
#12. Red Italian Glass Beads, multi-strand, necklace if choice in the villages around San Cristobal de Las Casas. A statement piece, adjustable length with pom pom ties. $88
#13. Warm olive green pom pom necklace with 3-strands, very elaborate, light and comfy, adjustable length. $67
#14. Seed pods or nut shells? lightweight and BoHo style. Slip over head. Easy. 26” long. $19
#15. Handmade copper bead necklace, 20” long from Michoacan. $34

Save the Date: November 3 GRAND EXPOVENTA—Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca

You don’t want to miss this! We have invited eight (8) of Oaxaca State’s finest textile artisans and one outstanding Coban, Guatemala, gauze weaver to an exhibition and sale on Thursday, November 3, from 11 am to 4 pm. Credit cards accepted!

Important: We take NO commission. 100% of all sales go directly to the artisans. This is our unwaivering commitment to textile artisan support and respect!

Come and stay for lunch. Traditional comida, aguas frescas, and snacks available for sale, locally prepared.

Those invited include collector’s choice artisans Francisca Palafox from San Mateo del Mar, Las Sanjuaneras Cooperative from San Juan Colorado, Fernando Gutierrez Vasquez from Tlahuitoltepec, Tixinda Cooperative from Pinotepa de Don Luis, Hermalinda Isidro from San Felipe Usila in the Chinantla region, Francisca Diaz Ortega from San Juan Cotzocon Mixe.

San Felipe Usila huipil

All invited artisans work with natural dyes, back strap or pedal looms, and have been recognized throughout Mexico and internationally. Some are Grand Masters of Mexican Folk Art. Some have won top juried prizes. Some have participated in the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market. We have known them for years!

Ride share with friends — please arrange your own round-trip transportation from Oaxaca City.

Questions? Contact erichsantiago@gmail.com or norma.schafer@icloud.com or tenidoamano@gmail.com

Zapotec Oaxaca and Oriental Rugs for Sale

I am offering several rugs from my collection for sale! Why? They don’t fit into my Taos house. The sizes and colors are not adapting well to my new environment. Some are new. All are in excellent condition.

How to Buy: send an email to norma.schafer@icloud.com and tell me the rug you want to purchase by number, your email, your mailing address and which payment method you prefer: 1) Zelle bank transfer with no service fee; 2) Venmo or 3) PayPal each with a 3% service fee. I will then send you a request for funds.

Shipping cost is based on weight and destination, and is additional. I will need to know your address and determine weight to calculate mailing costs.

SOLD. #1. 6 ft x 8-1/2 ft. 100% churra sheep wool in all natural shades of gray, Caracol design.

This new, never used rug is made by a master weaver in Teotitlan del Valle, Oaxaca who is a personal friend. It took him two months to create this masterpiece. The colors are a mix of gray on a cream background. The edges where it was cut from the loom are finished with an intricate braiding technique. No fringes to get stuck in your vacuum cleaner. The Caracol design is the most difficult to achieve because of the curves. It is symbolic of communication and the frets have deep meaning regarding the continuity of life, interpreted from nearby Mitla archeological site. Tapestry woven rugs of this size and quality are retailing for between $2,800 and $3,200. I’m selling it for $1,800 plus shipping. I calculate shipping cost to be around $60 but I will let you know if you wish to purchase this.

SOLD#2. Mitla Grecas are designs found on the archeol site temples rug measures 2.5 ft x 5 ft

This is woven at the Fe y Lola studio in Teotitlan del Valle of churra sheep wool colored with natural dyes the yellow comes from wild marigold a d it is paired with a warm natural gray wool the warp is sturdy cotton. The design is an innovative version of a traditional style. this rug usually sells for $510. You can buy it for $425.

SOLD #3. From the studio of Francisco Martinez Ruiz, This is a stunner, perfect as a wall-hanging with hand-knotted macrame fringes.

This tapestry is made with all natural dyes and measures 2-1/3 ft x 3 ft. the wool is dyed with cochineal, moss, and wild marigold. It is very fine and dense weaving using 10 warp threads per inch. Retails for $450. Will sell for $325.

SOLD #4. Runner measures 2.5 ft x 9.5 ft Gorgeous, natural dyes in wild marigold, indigo overdyes, and cochineal.
Another caracol masterpiece from Fe y Lola studio. The green is achieved by dipping a wild marigold skein of wool into an indigo dye bath. Original cost $1,300. Selling for $750.
#5. Hand-knotted wool pile rug in the Persian style, made in India. Measures 4’ x 6’ and in excellent condition.

This rug has no wear and will surely provide pleasure and comfort for another two or three generations. Thick wool pile. Vintage. Outstanding. Last photo is reverse side of rug. Valued at between $600-800. Will sell for $385. This rug is heavy and I estimate shipping could be $75-100.

Thank you VERY much for looking. Let me know if you have any questions. Thank