Tag Archives: natural dyes

2022 Oaxaca Coast Textile Study Tour

Arrive on Saturday, January 15 and depart on Monday, January 24, 2022 — 9 nights, 10 days in textile heaven! Starting at $2,895.

SOLD OUT! JOIN THE WAIT LIST.

We are hopeful for 2022! A $500 deposit will secure your place. This tour is strictly limited to 10 participants –6 single rooms and 2 shared rooms.

At Oaxaca Cultural Navigator, we aim to give you an unparalleled and in-depth travel experience to participate and delve deeply into indigenous culture, folk art and celebrations. Our hope, too, is that we will all be well and it will be safe enough to travel to Puerto Escondido by January 2022. If for any reason we must cancel this tour, you will receive a full 100% refund. See notes below about COVID vaccination requirements to travel with us.

To register, please complete the Registration Form and email it to us. When you tell us you are ready to register, we will send you a link to make your reservation deposit.

Indigo and purple shell dye in Pinotepa de Don Luis
Handmade masks for Dance of the Tigers, San Juan Colorado

Cost is $2,895 per person shared room or $3,495 per person for private room. See details and itinerary below.

Please complete this Registration Form and return to Norma Schafer at norma.schafer@icloud.com to participate. Thank you.

This entire study tour is focused on exploring the textiles of Oaxaca’s Costa Chica. You arrive to and leave from Puerto Escondido, connecting through Mexico City or Oaxaca.

Natural dyes on back-strap loomed cotton, the finest handmade garments

We go deep, and not wide. We give you an intimate, connecting experience. We spend time to know the culture. You will meet artisans in their homes and workshops, enjoy local cuisine, dip your hands in an indigo dye-bath, and travel to remote villages you may not go to on your own. This study tour focuses on revival of ancient textile techniques and Oaxaca’s vast weaving culture that encompasses the use of natural dyes, back-strap loom weaving, drop spindle hand spinning, and glorious, pre-Hispanic native cotton.

The weaver and Kristy, who came on our trip from Australia

Villages along the coast and neighboring mountains were able to preserve their traditional weaving culture because of their isolation. Stunning cotton is spun and woven into lengths of cloth connected with intricate needlework to form amazing garments.

San Juan Colorado, Oaxaca, weaver who uses indigo and nanche tree bark for dyes

We have invited a noted cultural anthropologist to travel with us. She has worked in the region for the past 15 years and knows the textile culture and people intimately. We learn about and discuss motifs, lifestyle, endangered species, quality and value of direct support.

Our 2020 group and one of the weaving cooperatives we visit
Market meander, Puerto Escondido

What we do:

  • We visit 7 weaving villages in Oaxaca and Guerrero
  • We meet back-strap loom weavers, natural dyers, spinners
  • We see, touch, smell native Oaxaca cotton — brown, green, natural
  • We participate in a sea turtle release with sunset dinner on the beach
  • We swim in a rare bioluminescence lagoon
  • We visit three local markets to experience daily life
  • We travel to remote regions to discover amazing cloth
  • We support indigenous artisans directly
  • We attend Dreamweavers annual sale at Hotel Santa Fe
  • We escape WINTER in El Norte
Hand-painted Converse tennis shoes at Pinotepa de Don Luis art studio

Take this study tour to learn about:

  • the culture, history and identity of cloth
  • beating and spinning cotton, and weaving with natural dyes
  • native seed preservation and cultivation
  • clothing design and construction, fashion adaptations
  • symbols and meaning of regional textile designs
  • choice of colors and fibers that show each woman’s aesthetic while keeping with a particular village traje or costume
  • the work of women in pre-Hispanic Mexico and today
Rare skirt (posahuanco) fabric dyed with caracol purpura, cochineal and indigo

2020 Itinerary — Oaxaca Coast Textile Study Tour

  • Saturday, January 15: Fly to Puerto Escondido—overnight in Puerto Escondido, Group Welcome Dinner at 7 p.m. (D)
  • Sunday, January 16: Puerto Escondido market meander, lunch and afternoon on your own. Late afternoon departure for turtle release and Manialtepec bioluminescence lagoon with beach dinner.  (B, D)
We release just hatched baby Ridley turtles into the Pacific Ocean
  • Monday, January 17: Depart after breakfast for Tututepec to visit a young weaver who is reviving his village’s textile traditions, visit local museum and murals — overnight in Pinotepa Nacional. (B, L)
  • Tuesday, January 18: After breakfast, we go on to the weaving village of San Juan Colorado to visit two women’s cooperatives working in natural dyes, hand-spinning, and back strap loom weaving. Overnight in Pinotepa Nacional. (B, L)
  • Wednesday, January 19: After breakfast, we return to the mountain with a first stop at the Pinotepa de Don Luis market. Then, we visit the Converse shoe project where talented artists hand-paint footwear, carve gourds and make amazing graphic art prints. We have lunch with Dreamweavers cooperative members and caracol purpura purple snail dyers in their home, complete with show and sale, and cultural talk. Overnight in Pinotepa Nacional. (B, L)
  • Thursday, January 20: After breakfast, we travel up the coast highway into the state of Guerrero, where we visit two outstanding Amusgo weaving groups in Xochistlahuaca and Zacoalpan. They are working to revive ancient designs and incorporate locally grown native, wild cotton. Overnight in Ometepec. (B, L)
  • Friday, January 21: After breakfast, we begin our journey back to Puerto Escondido, with a stop at the Afro-Mexican Museum to understand Mexico’s Black history. We stop in Pinotepa Nacional for lunch and a market meander.  Overnight in Puerto Escondido. (B, L)
Understanding the slave trade and cultural history, Afro-Mexican Museum, Costa Chica
  • Saturday, January 22: This is a day on your own to explore the area, return to the Puerto Escondido market, take a rest from the road trip, enjoy the beach and pools, and begin packing for your trip home.  Overnight in Puerto Escondido. (B)
  • Sunday, January 23: Attend the annual Dreamweavers Expoventa featuring the Tixinda Weaving Cooperative from Pinotepa de Don Luis. Other regional artisans are also invited, making this a grand finale folk art extravaganza — a fitting ending to our time together on Oaxaca’s coast. Grand Finale Dinner. Overnight in Puerto Escondido. (B, D)
  • Monday, January 24: Depart for home.
Sea and insect motifs adorn collar embroidered with snail dye and indigo

Note: You can add days on to the tour — arrive early or stay later — at your own expense.

Cost to Participate

  • $2,895 double room with private bath (sleeps 2)
  • $3,495 for a single supplement (private room and bath, sleeps 1)
We visit the mask-maker, too
Picking native pre-Hispanic green and coyuchi cotton, Amusgos, Xochistlahuaca, Guerrero

Your Tour Leader: Norma Schafer, director of Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC, will again lead this popular tour. We sell out each year so don’t hesitate to register if you are interested in participating.

An intricate floral bodice, woven into the back strap loomed cloth, San Pedro Amusgos
Village chapel, Zacoalpan, Guerrero

Some Vocabulary and Terms

Sunset dinner on the beach, somewhere north of Puerto Escondido, Manialtepec Lagoon
On the Manialtepec Lagoon, a night it is bioluminescence–Let’s go swimming!

Who Should Attend

  • Explorers of indigenous cloth, native fibers
  • Collectors, curators and cultural appreciators
  • Textile and fashion designers
  • Weavers, embroiderers, dyers and collectors
  • Photographers and artists who want inspiration
  • Anyone who loves cloth, culture and collaboration

Full Registration Policies, Procedures and Cancellations– Please READ

Xochistlahuaca, Guerrero, where Amusgo women make extraordinary cloth
Shuko with award-winning coyuchi and cochineal huipil, Dreamweavers

Reservations and Cancellations.  A $500 deposit is required to guarantee your spot. The balance is due in two equal payments. The second payment of  50% of the balance is due on or before September 15, 2021. The third payment, 50% balance, is due on or before November 15, 2021. We accept payment using online e-commerce only. We will send you an itemized invoice when you tell us you are ready to register. After November 15, 2021, there are no refunds. If you cancel on or before November 15, 2021, we will refund 50% of your deposit received to date. After that, there are no refunds UNLESS we cancel for any reason. Then, if we cancel, you will receive a full 100% refund.*

We will send you an itemized invoice when you tell us you are ready to register. After November 15, 2021, there are no refunds.*

Required–Travel Health/Accident Insurance: We require that you carry international accident/health insurance that includes $50,000+ of emergency medical evacuation insurance. Proof of insurance must be sent at least 45 days before departure.

We require proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

History of the Mixtec nation and 8-Jaguar Claw Chieftain
Hand-carved jicara gourds, rattles and lamps

Be certain your passport has at least six months on it before it expires from the date you enter Mexico!

Fuschina dye, preferred by the women of Santiago Ixtayutla, Jamiltepec

Plane Tickets, Arrivals/Departures: Please send us your plane schedule at least 45 days before the trip. This includes name of carrier, flight numbers, arrival and departure time to our destination.

All documentation for plane reservations, required travel insurance, and personal health issues must be received 45 days before the program start or we reserve the right to cancel your registration without reimbursement.

Terrain, Walking and Group Courtesy: We will do some walking and getting in/out of vans. If you have mobility issues or health/breathing impediments, please let us know before you register. This may not be the study tour for you.

Indigo and coyuchi cotton huipil, detail

Well-Being: If you have mobility issues or health impediments, please let us know. Our travel to remote villages will be by van on secondary roads with curves, usually not for more than two hours. When you tell us you are ready to register, we will send you a health questionnaire to complete. If you have walking or car dizziness issues, this may not be the trip for you.

Traveling with a small group has its advantages and also means that independent travelers will need to make accommodations to group needs and schedule. We include free time to go off on your own if you wish.

Note: Itinerary subject to schedule change and modification.

AeroTucan, between Oaxaca and Puerto Escondido, a 35-minute ride

Mostly Mexico Mixed Bag Sale: Textiles, Jewelry

There are 29 items in this sale today. They include earrings, necklaces and bracelets, handwoven and natural dyed wool rugs from Oaxaca, and two beautiful pieces of clothing. It’s a mixed bag! All are reduced significantly as I prepare to make my move to Taos, NM. Prices start as low as $15. I hope you find something you like. Please scroll down to be sure you see everything.

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo, Zelle, and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee).

#1 Vintage 1950’s Mexican Sterling and Moonstone, 7″ long. $225 $165
SOLD. #2 Vintage Mexican Silver + Turquoise Bracelet, 7-1/2″ long. $135 $75
SOLD. #3 Vintage Raoul Sosa Designer 1970’s Bone Bracelet, 5″ inside, opening is 1-1/8″ $295 $195
SOLD. #4 20 Centavos Silver 1939 Mexican Coin Bracelet, 7-1/2″long. $125 $65
SOLD. #5 Oaxaca faceted onyx, pearl + sterling filigree. 3/4″x1/2″ $45 $37
SOLD. #6 Mexico Sterling silver filigree and garnet. 1-1/2″ x 1″ $20 $15
#7 Vintage cast sterling silver + pearls Butterfly earrings. 1-1/4″ x 2″ $55 $35
SOLD. #8 12K Gold filigree and coral. 1″x1/2″ $125 $90
#9 12K gold finest filigree earrings. 2″x1″ $235 $155
SOLD. #10 Oaxaca Chou design bead earrings 2-1/2″x1″ $45 $25

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo, Zelle, and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee).

SOLD. #11 Vintage 12K gold filigree, pearl, glass. 1″x1-3/4″ $225 $160
SOLD #12 Federico Jimenez Oaxaca signed turquoise and silver, 2-1/4″x1″ $225 $185
SOLD. #13 Mexican onyx and sterling button earrings. 7/8″ x 1″ oval $25 $20
SOLD. #14 Israeli designer Ayala Bar. 3/4″x1″ $50 $20
SOLD. #15 Sterling silver, India. 2″x1″ $55 $45
#16 Vintage Oaxaca Virgin of Soledad Sterling and White Heart Glass Beads, 19″ $385 $325
#17 India Vintage Rabari tribal necklace, adjustable. 26″ $135 $95
#18 Oaxaca, black hand-polished clay beaded necklace, 21″ $75 $65
#19 Vintage Morocco Bedouin Amber, Coral and Metal Necklace, 17″ $295 $195
SOLD. #20 Chiapas Maya Coin Necklace, Ties to adjust length. $25 $15

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo, Zelle, and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee).

SOLD. #21 New Mexico hand-cut/inlay turquoise, onyx, spiny oyster necklace, 20″ $185 $135
#22 New Mexico turquoise, coral + sterling pendant, $65 (does not include chain) $40
SOLD. #23 Oaxaca Black Clay Bead Mexican Coin Necklace, 20″ $65 $35

The four rugs below can be used on floor, wall, or to adorn furniture. Woven on a treadle loom by Taller Teñido a Mano in Oaxaca, Mexico, they feature all natural dyes created in the studio. Sturdy and beautiful.

#24 Indigo ikat + zapote negro, 22×33″ $295 $250
#25 Indigo, un-dyed wool, cochineal, pomegranate, 23×23″ $195 $155
#26 Indigo, cochineal, un-dyed wool, 23×36″ $285 $250
#27 Cochineal, indigo, marigold, pomegranate, 23×23″ $195 $155
#28 Chiapas designer Alberto Lopez Gomez, size small, 22″x25″ $495 $420 — featured at 2020 New York Fashion Week
SOLD. #29 Designer Camelia Ramos, Malinalco, Esto. de Mexico,
ikat poncho, 100% cotton, $175 $125

Deck Your Halls with Oaxaca Rugs: Shop Open

We got this shipment of hand-woven Oaxaca rugs just in time for the holidays. Even if you are celebrating small (and we hope you are), these floor coverings (or display them as wall hangings) are a great decor enhancer for a fresh, new look. Made in Oaxaca, Mexico, by Taller Teñido a Mano on a 2-harness treadle loom, these tapestries are versatile and sturdy.

What makes these rugs special?

  • Our artisans use only naturally-dyed churro sheep wool
  • The wool is hand-carded and spun with the malacate — drop spindle
  • Dye materials include cochineal, indigo, wild marigold, wood bark, pomegranate (to name a few)
  • Our artisans dye the wool themselves — this is a slow process that yields amazing, vibrant and strong colors
  • The weaver uses his imagination to create unique, one-of-a-kind textiles
  • Designed in Oaxaca — made to last a lifetime

We also have Face Masks dyed with indigo, walnut and wild marigold, along with several skeins of cotton thread (3-1/2 ounces / 100 grams) dyed with indigo and wild marigold — perfect for weaving or embroidery.

Please place your order quickly to receive by December 24, 2020. Thanks so much.

#1–Indigo, cochineal, undyed wool, 23×36″ $285

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee) if you don’t use PayPal.

#2–Indigo, cochineal, un-dyed wool, 23×36 $285
#3–Cochineal, indigo, marigold, pomegranate, 23×23″ $195

Handmade in Oaxaca: Taller Teñido a Mano specializes in experimenting with natural dye extracts for different applications on fibers. They have 18 years of experience and lead a group of artisans to create tapestries, bags, home goods and other textiles, often supplying thread to other artisan weavers, too.

SOLD. #4–100% henequin (Jute/hemp) with indigo + undyed wool. 23×22″ $175
SOLD. #5–Indigo + undyed wool, 31×55″ $285
#6–Indigo, undyed wool, cochineal, pomegranate, 23×23″ $195
#7–Indigo ikat + zapote negro, 22×33″. $295
SOLD OUT. 4 Skeins of cotton yarn, 3.5 oz. /100 grams, $24 each
  • SOLD. Yarn Skein #A — wild marigold (1), $24
  • SOLD. Yarn Skein #B — indigo (1), $24
  • SOLD. Yarn Skein #C — indigo (1), $24
  • SOLD. Yarn Skein #D — indigo (1), $24
Face Masks, 100% cotton, lined with natural dyes, $17 each
  • SOLD. Face Mask #1–TOP: pomegranate dyed
  • SOLD. Face Mask #2–MIDDLE: walnut dyed
  • Face Mask #3–BOTTOM: indigo dyed
  • Face Mask #4–indigo dyed (not shown)
  • Face Mask #5– indigo dyed (not shown)
  • Face Mask #6 — indigo dyed (not shown)

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee) if you don’t use PayPal.

Give Meaning: Las Sanjuaneras Textiles from Oaxaca–Handmade, Heartfelt

A handmade, hand-woven textile from Oaxaca is a meaningful gift this year when so few tourists are there to support artisans. Instead of taking you into remote villages to meet the makers this year, I am bringing what they make to the USA to offer them to you. Please support them.

Today’s Sale Features Las Sanjuaneras Cooperative

Read about the Las Sanjuaneras Cooperative here!

We can collectively help alleviate the economic ravages of Covid-19 this way. Please consider helping the women who make these beautiful garments by making a purchase either for yourself or for a loved one. These are one-of-a-kind treasures.

SOLD. #2. Brisaida. Indigo, almond bark. 31×52″ $525

Made-by-hand means:

  1. Growing the organic, native cotton in small mountain plots.
  2. Cleaning, carding and then spinning the cotton with the drop spindle (malacate).
  3. Picking locally sourced plant materials for natural dyes; buying cochineal and indigo from specialty farmers.
  4. Making the dye baths and dyeing the threads.
  5. Dressing the back-strap loom.
  6. Weaving the threads on the ancient back-strap loom.
  7. Hand-sewing the wefts of cloth together with intricate stitches to make a garment.
  8. Washing and pressing the finished textile.
  9. Packing it up and mailing it to us to prepare for you.

Measurements: First number is width. Second number is length. Width is measure across the front, side seam to side seam.

#12. Brisaida. 30×21″ $320

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please be sure to select Send Money to Family and Friends! DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services–so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee) if you don’t use PayPal.

SOLD. #5. Camerina. Indigo + ferrous oxide. 27×21″ $295.
SOLD #4. Camerina. Indigo. Medium weight. 29×33″ $320

Where is Las Sanjuaneras Cooperative located? At the end of a winding mountain road up from MEX 200 on the coast at Pinotepa Nacional is the weaving village of San Juan Colorado. It’s about four hours from Puerto Escondido and is part of our Oaxaca Coast Textile Tour 2022 (next year). Meanwhile, we can support this talented group while we wait until it is safe to travel again!

SOLD. #9. Josefina. 36×24″ Medium weight. $350
SOLD. #3. Andrea. Indigo + Native Cotton Gauze. 33×42″ $445.

Textile Care: Dry clean or wash by hand. To wash, turn garment inside out. Immerse in cold water using a mild soap such as Fels Naptha or baby shampoo. Don’t use Woolite — it leeches color. Gently massage the cloth. Squeeze and roll in a towel to absorb excess water. Hang to dry. Use medium steam heat to iron if needed.

#11. Claudia. Marigold, medium weight. 35×40″ $425.
#10. Claudia. Iron oxide, mahogany. Medium weight. 36×37″ $425
SOLD. #7. Andrea. Indigo, mahogany gauze. 34×27″ $340

Return Policy: We support artisans and funds get transferred immediately. There are no returns or refunds. This is a final sale.

SOLD. #14 Finely woven, iron oxide. 34×39″ $325
#15. Iron oxide + indigo. 30×34″ $285
Picking native green cotton in San Juan Colorado
#8. Camerina. 31×21-1/2″ Brazilwood, nanche. $295

To Buy: Please email me normahawthorne@mac.com with your name, mailing address and item number. I will mark it SOLD, send you a PayPal link to purchase and add $12 for cost of mailing. Please be sure to select Send Money to Family and Friends! — DO NOT SELECT buying goods or services — so we don’t pay commissions. We also accept Venmo and I can send you a Square invoice (+3% fee) if you don’t use PayPal.

SOLD. #19. Andrea. Marigold, chocolatillo. 35-1/2×24″. $295.
#16. Aurora. Beet, mahogany, nanche, almond, iron oxide. 38×22″ $325.
SOLD. #17 Margarita. Marigold, iron oxide, beet, brazilwood. 22-3/4×35″ $185.
SOLD. #18. Aurora. 19×28″. Nanche, mahogany, almond, beet. $195.

Meaningful Gifts That Support Oaxaca Artisans

This is a preview of what will be our last sale before the holidays. If you love Oaxaca and are keeping track of Covid-19 there, you know that the CDC has urged us to NOT travel there. All the social media groups I belong to warn of the same: Covid-19 is raging, hospitals are full and it is dangerous to go. In the absence of tourism, artisans are struggling. You can help by making a purchase here to directly support them.

Assortment of Las Sanjuaneras blusas and huipiles–15 pieces total

I have just received a small shipment of textiles from Las Sanjuaneras Cooperative in the remote coastal village of San Juan Colorado. These pieces will go up for sale on Sunday. Shop will open at 1 PM Eastern Time on Sunday, December 6, 2020.

Maria and her niece, Aguacatenango, Chiapas

I am also expecting a limited shipment of embroidered French knot blouses from Chiapas later next week. Most will be in large and extra-large sizes.

French knots galore–embroidery from Chiapas

Also coming from Oaxaca are a few hand-woven naturally dyed tapestry rugs from Taller Teñido a Mano, along with lengths of naturally-dyed cotton that we will sell as yardage for sewists.

Indigo-dyed wool rug, Teotitlan del Valle

I work directly with the artisans so they get full value for their work. You can be assured that as soon as you buy, I send funds directly to them via Western Union that they can pick up as cash. I also use Remitly that deposits into bank accounts, if they have one.

Indigo-dyed cotton, 12-1/2″x22″ by Taller Teñido a Mano

You get something beautiful to wear or to gift. The artisan has an income to buy the necessities of life at this moment!

Cochineal dyed cotton, 12×22, Taller Teñido a Mano