Tag Archives: shawls

12 Cozy Warm, Shawls + Scarves Added to Shop

Just in time for winter bluster, order soon to receive before the holidays, these scarves and shawls are from Chiapas and Oaxaca, handwoven on either the back-strap or flying shuttle pedal loom. Materials are wool, cotton, and cashmere. The colors are extraordinary. We hope you see for yourself. When you order from the shop, you can use a credit card or PayPal and there are no fees to you. We can package up and ship within three business days.

shop.oaxacaculture.com

Here’s a small sample of what is in store:

Chiapas is textile heaven, where Maya women in remote villages weave extraordinary textiles on the back-strap loom while tending sheep and caring for children. Come see for yourself as we take you to remote villages in the highlands beyond the colonial city of San Cristobal de las Casas, where we are based.

Chiapas Textile Study Tour. Spaces Open. February 20-28, 2024

It’s An Indigo World Sale: Shawls, Scarves

Well, mostly indigo, plus some other spectacular natural dyes that are used to color the threads of these twelve (12) beautifully back-strap loom woven scarves and shawls. Here, you will find alder wood bark (palo de aguila), wild marigold (pericone), banana tree bark, purple snail (caracol), coyuchi (native brown cotton), and cochineal (red bug) dyes. These pieces, from my personal collection, are from Michoacan and Oaxaca. All are in pristine condition, most never worn. (Remember, I’m not opening a textile museum!) I’ll explain in more detail with each piece. One size fits all! Perfect for holiday gifting — for her, him, they!

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. Note: Thank you for understanding that all sales are final. Please measure carefully!

SOLD 1. Indigo shawl embellished with caracol rare purple snail dye from the Oaxaca coast village of Pinotepa de Don Luis, created by the famous Tixinda cooperative led by Don Habacuc. This is an ample shawl that measures 23″ wide x 80″ long. 100% cotton. All natural dyes. $265.

SOLD #2. This was a prize winner at the Dreamweavers January 2021 expoventa in Puerto Escondido. It is a handwoven scarf made on the back strap loom with threads dyed with indigo, coyuchi, caracol purpura, and fuschine. Measures 9-3/4″ wide x 78″ long. 100% cotton. $165.

SOLD #3. Master weaver Roman Gutierrez from Teotitlan del Valle wove and dyed this shibori shawl colored with wild marigold and over-dyed with indigo. It measures 22-1/2″ wide x 76″ long. 100% cotton. $145.

SOLD 4. Another Tixinda cooperative shawl, a real beauty, woven with indigo, caracol, coyuchi and cochineal. Measures 26″ wide x 110″ long. $285.

SOLD 5. From the Mixe Oaxaca mountain village of Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec, a very fine pedal loomed scarf created by Artefer, dyed with alder wood and banana bark. Measures 12″ wide x 84″ long. Wrap it around the neck twice for super comfort. $125.

#6. In Zinacantan, Chiapas, they create these beautiful hand-woven neck scarves — fold in a triangle and wear like a bandana! The pompoms serve as ties! Red, black, and peach. Great color combo. Not natural dyes. 25″ square. $75.

SOLD #7. This herringbone design from Tlahuitoltepec is made on the pedal loom with cotton threads dyed with indigo. Gorgeous scarf. Measures 12″ wide x 84″ long. $125.

8. Another fine shawl, lightweight and perfect for winter warmth from Tlahuitoltepec. It is woven with a cotton warp and wool weft. The cotton is dyed with banana bark and the wool weft is indigo. Measures 24″ wide x 96″ long. Wrap it around your body or use as a throw! $225.

9. What can I say? We will miss her. Recently deceased Cecelia Bautista Caballero wove this shawl in her village of Ahuiran, Michoacan. She hand tied the knots in the 13″ punta (fringe), too. I bought this from her when I visited her home in 2019. You can have a piece of Mexican weaving culture history with this shawl. Commercial dyes. A masterful textile, rare and beautiful. Measures 32″ wide x 110″ long. $445.

SOLD 10. This textile is a traditional technique from the coastal Oaxaca mountain village of Santiago Ixtlayutla, near Pinotepa de Don Luis, where I purchased it. The dye is fuschine, which some call cochineal, but it isn’t. It is a synthetic dye that adheres to the silk designs woven as supplementary weft into the cotton. The dye brings out the figures of religious symbols and animals typical to the region. The bleeding of the dye is actually what it does and is considered part of the design. Very beautiful and psychedelic! Measures 24″ wide x 88″ long. $295.

11. From my collection, vintage African mud cloth textile dyed with indigo. Good vintage condition. Some wear. Measures 27″ wide x 96″ long. The 12″ fringes are hand-twisted. $95.

SOLD. 12. Patzcuaro flower garden shawl measures 27″ wide x 82″ long. Made on the back-strap loom in Tzintzuntzan, Michoacan, by Teofila Servin Barriga, the most famous weaver-embroiderer on Lake Patzcuaro. The flowers are all embroidered using French knots and other embroidery stitches. It is stunning. Measures 27″ wide x 82″ long. $385.

SOLD.13. This is a masterpiece from Malinalco, Estado de Mexico, where ikat weaving reigns. Camelia Ramos learned rebozo weaving from her father and has passed it on to her children. She is recognized by Fundacion Banamex for her outstanding workmanship. This rebozo, from her studio Xoxopastli, is woven with threads dyed in cochineal and indigo, a rarity for this type of work. The punta or fringe is triangular in the Colonial style preferred by the Spanish women who came to Mexico after the conquest. It takes three months to weave the cloth and another three months to hand-knot the fringes. Measures 31″wide x 100″ long. $425.

Thank you once again for browsing and shopping with me. I very much appreciate your support and your dedication to our Mexican artisans. -Norma

Bonus photo: Tarantula in my backyard. Harmless. Half the size of our Teotitlan arachnids. Furry nevertheless!

It’s An Indigo World Sale: Shawls, Scarves

Well, mostly indigo, plus some other spectacular natural dyes that are used to color the threads of these twelve (12) beautifully back-strap loom woven scarves and shawls. Here, you will find alder wood bark (palo de aguila), wild marigold (pericone), banana tree bark, purple snail (caracol), coyuchi (native brown cotton), and cochineal (red bug) dyes. These pieces, from my personal collection, are from Michoacan and Oaxaca. All are in pristine condition, most never worn. (Remember, I’m not opening a textile museum!) I’ll explain in more detail with each piece. One size fits all! Perfect for holiday gifting — for her, him, they!

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. Note: Thank you for understanding that all sales are final. Please measure carefully!

#1. Indigo shawl embellished with caracol rare purple snail dye from the Oaxaca coast village of Pinotepa de Don Luis, created by the famous Tixinda cooperative led by Don Habacuc. This is an ample shawl that measures 23″ wide x 80″ long. 100% cotton. All natural dyes. $265.

#2. This was a prize winner at the Dreamweavers January 2021 expoventa in Puerto Escondido. It is a handwoven scarf made on the back strap loom with threads dyed with indigo, coyuchi, caracol purpura, and fuschine. Measures 9-3/4″ wide x 78″ long. 100% cotton. $165.

#3. Master weaver Roman Gutierrez from Teotitlan del Valle wove and dyed this shibori shawl colored with wild marigold and over-dyed with indigo. It measures 22-1/2″ wide x 76″ long. 100% cotton. $145.

#4. Another Tixinda cooperative shawl, a real beauty, woven with indigo, caracol, coyuchi and cochineal. Measures 26″ wide x 110″ long. $285.

#5. From the Mixe Oaxaca mountain village of Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec, a very fine pedal loomed scarf created by Artefer, dyed with alder wood and banana bark. Measures 12″ wide x 84″ long. Wrap it around the neck twice for super comfort. $125.

#6. In Zinacantan, Chiapas, they create these beautiful hand-woven neck scarves — fold in a triangle and wear like a bandana! The pompoms serve as ties! Red, black, and peach. Great color combo. Not natural dyes. 25″ square. $75.

#7. This herringbone design from Tlahuitoltepec is made on the pedal loom with cotton threads dyed with indigo. Gorgeous scarf. Measures 12″ wide x 84″ long. $125.

8. Another fine shawl, lightweight and perfect for winter warmth from Tlahuitoltepec. It is woven with a cotton warp and wool weft. The cotton is dyed with banana bark and the wool weft is indigo. Measures 24″ wide x 96″ long. Wrap it around your body or use as a throw! $225.

9. What can I say? We will miss her. Recently deceased Cecelia Bautista Caballero wove this shawl in her village of Ahuiran, Michoacan. She hand tied the knots in the 13″ punta (fringe), too. I bought this from her when I visited her home in 2019. You can have a piece of Mexican weaving culture history with this shawl. Commercial dyes. A masterful textile, rare and beautiful. Measures 32″ wide x 110″ long. $445.

10. This textile is a traditional technique from the coastal Oaxaca mountain village of Santiago Ixtlayutla, near Pinotepa de Don Luis, where I purchased it. The dye is fuschine, which some call cochineal, but it isn’t. It is a synthetic dye that adheres to the silk designs woven as supplementary weft into the cotton. The dye brings out the figures of religious symbols and animals typical to the region. The bleeding of the dye is actually what it does and is considered part of the design. Very beautiful and psychedelic! Measures 24″ wide x 88″ long. $295.

11. From my collection, vintage African mud cloth textile dyed with indigo. Good vintage condition. Some wear. Measures 27″ wide x 96″ long. The 12″ fringes are hand-twisted. $95.

12. Patzcuaro flower garden shawl measures 27″ wide x 82″ long. Made on the back-strap loom in Tzintzuntzan, Michoacan, by Teofila Servin Barriga, the most famous weaver-embroiderer on Lake Patzcuaro. The flowers are all embroidered using French knots and other embroidery stitches. It is stunning. Measures 27″ wide x 82″ long. $385.

SOLD.13. This is a masterpiece from Malinalco, Estado de Mexico, where ikat weaving reigns. Camelia Ramos learned rebozo weaving from her father and has passed it on to her children. She is recognized by Fundacion Banamex for her outstanding workmanship. This rebozo, from her studio Xoxopastli, is woven with threads dyed in cochineal and indigo, a rarity for this type of work. The punta or fringe is triangular in the Colonial style preferred by the Spanish women who came to Mexico after the conquest. It takes three months to weave the cloth and another three months to hand-knot the fringes. Measures 31″wide x 100″ long. $425.

Thank you once again for browsing and shopping with me. I very much appreciate your support and your dedication to our Mexican artisans. -Norma

Bonus photo: Tarantula in my backyard. Harmless. Half the size of our Teotitlan arachnids. Furry nevertheless!

Oaxaca, Mexico: Source for Natural Dye Textiles

It’s an ongoing discovery. Finding the weavers who work with natural dyes. They live and work in humble homes or grander casas, on back alleys, dirt streets, cobbled avenues, main highways, hillsides and flat-lands. Their studios are filled with the aroma and sights of natural materials — stinky indigo dye vats, wood burning fires, prickly pear nopal cactus studded with insects that yield intense red.

All photos © Norma Schafer, Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC

JuanaGutierrez TreeMoss

In this photo, above left, dyer/weaver Juana prepares ground cochineal on the traditional metate, grinding the dried insect by hand until it is a fine powder, ready to make a dye bath for wool that will be used for rugs. Above right, tree moss waits for the dye pot.

That’s why I’ve organized one-day natural dye textile study tours to explore this artisanal process.

ArturoRebozo2 CochinealIndigoYarn

Above left, ikat rebozo with natural dyes of wild marigold, cochineal and indigo from San Pablo Villa de Mitla. Right, wool on the loom.

Cleaning a rug woven with naturally dyed wool

Cleaning a rug woven with naturally dyed wool

You know how committed I am to the artisans who work with natural dyes. It is a laborious and vertical process — winding the yarn, preparing the dye baths, dyeing the yarn, then weaving it. To create textiles using natural dyes takes time and is a many-step process. I believe the people who work this way deserve special attention and support.

Nopal Cactus and Indigo, copyright 2016 Norma Schafer, Oaxaca Cultural Navigator LLC

Nopal Cactus and Indigo, copyright 2016 Norma Schafer, Oaxaca Cultural Navigator

They start with the natural wool that comes from the mountains surrounding the Oaxaca valley. The best wool is hand-spun for strength and has no additives, like nylon or polyester, to lower cost.

IMG_6963 IndigoDyePot

Then, indigo and cochineal is bought from local Oaxaca sources. Both are expensive, now about 1,800 MXN pesos per kilo. Synthetic dyes are a fraction of this cost and only requires one-step to produce colored yarn.

DryPomegranates FedericoNuez

Other dye sources are wild marigold, pecan leaves and shells, pomegranate fruit, tree moss, eucalyptus bark, black zapote fruit and much more.  The wool needs to be washed of lanolin and mordanted to absorb and fix the natural dye so it will not fade. To get a full range of color, local weavers and dyers use over dyes, too.

IndigoPericoneOverdye Yellow2Green

When the yarns are colored they are then ready to weave. Depending on size and material density, a piece can take from one week to several months.

CochinealHands2 ArturoRebozo1

It takes a special person who understands quality of materials and finished product to work this way. The process is organic, sustainable and environmentally sound.

CochinealHand SteamyDyePot

Rebozos, Guitars and Masks in Michoacan, Mexico

I’ve been back in Oaxaca for almost two weeks, and my mind is still on Michoacan, the last leg of my September journey, and the rebozos woven there. When I came to Oaxaca years ago, I thought it would be the perfect place from which to explore other parts of Mexico, north and south. And so it is.

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Sharing the Journey to Ahuiran, Paracho, Michoacan

Ahuiran is a small Purepecha village about an hour and a half from Patzcuaro in the Mexican state of Michoacan, high on the Maseta Purepecha (plateau) near Uruapan. It’s a beautiful drive through fertile farmland, green hills, pastures and tree-lined roads. And, it’s safe. For a complete discussion of Purepecha culture and history, click here.

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Ahuiran rebozo concurso: And the winners are …

Ahuiran women are famous for their hand-woven rebozos made on the back strap loom. They wear what they weave. Not many in other parts of Mexico still adorn themselves in traditional traje. Rebozo-making and wearing is a dying art.

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This winner has rayon fringe that looks like peacock feathers.

I joined a group of Patzcuaro women friends to go to a rebozo fair, which was really a concurso, or regional competition to select the best of the best. I could not pass up another chance to see great rebozos. I vowed not to buy another. Hah!

Travel with me to Tenancingo, Estado de Mexico, February 3-11, 2016, for the Mexico Textile and Folk Art Study Tour: Tenancingo Rebozos & More

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We discovered this competition was more than rebozos. It included wood carving and string instrument making, art forms that are translated to furniture, masks, violins, cellos and guitars.

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The judges came from Morelia and they took their time to make their selections. Patience is the keyword for being in Mexico.

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We arrived around 1:00 p.m. and waited. Milled around. Fingered hand-embroidered blouses. Ogled the rebozos that were brought in by the weavers to display for the competition.

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Watched the passing fashion parade of glittery pleated skirts and flashy fringe. I saw a mask I liked and negotiated a price and bought it long before the judging started. A lovely young man carved it and asked me if I needed a gardner.

I was assured by the lady who embroidered the animal on this blouse (below right) that it was not a dog but a personal spirit protector. Many women were wearing similar blouses that were finely embroidered. Just not my style.

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We looked for lunch. I had my eye on the fish sizzling in oil. (I knew it would be well-cooked.) I walked around the mask table a few more times and did the same to take a closer look at the Paracho instruments. Had an ice cream, and waited some more. In Mexico one learns the virtue of patience quickly.

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The Ahuiran rebozos are different from the ikat technique found in Tenancingo de Degollado in the State of Mexico. Here, they are heavier cotton. The traditional rebozos are black with blue and white pin stripes. Now, the color palette is extensive and can include lots of shiny rayon.

RebozoParade

The viewing stands filled up with villagers and I noticed a very regal, elegant woman with an extraordinary embroidered blue and yellow skirt. This turned out to be Cecilia Bautista, a Grand Master of Mexican Folk Art.

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Cecilia is proud that she was the first weaver to experiment with incorporating real feathers on the fringes. The idea came to her 22 years ago when she learned about feather work done in pre-Hispanic times by her people, the Purepecha (or Tarascans, as the Spanish called them).

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Cecilia’s family of musicians came to entertain the crowd by playing traditional songs on their string instruments, all hand-made. Women came forward to dance, including Cecilia. These are worthy of a major symphony orchestra performance.

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At 4:00 p.m. the judges were ready to announce the rebozo winners. How did they choose? Density and intricacy of the textile weave. How it draped when they put it on. The soft, silkiness of the fabric. Whether it had a straight edge. The length and technical elaboration of the punta (fringe).  There was a special category for puntas that included feathers, too!

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And the mask I bought got the first place prize in the category!

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There were six gringas who came from Patzcuaro for this event. Three of us left with a rebozo, priced between 1,500 and 3,000 pesos.

Best61_AhuiranMorelia-45Best61_AhuiranMorelia-48This was a festival day in Ahuiran. There were carnival rides, a special market, lots of vendors, cotton candy and barbecue. All the women came out in their best rebozos. The wives of the village leaders were totally decked out, complete with jumbo hair ribbons and the sparkliest skirts. The more confetti the merrier.

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We returned along the same route we arrived on, with volcano peaks on the horizon, men stooping over fields planted with potatoes, Purepecha villages with still a few of the original pre-Hispanic style wood homes called trojes (built without nails) still standing. It was a glorious day. Along the roadside, a spray of wildflowers, mostly cosmos, were coming into their color, necks stretching to the sun, heads waving in the breeze.

Here in Oaxaca, nights have turned chilly. Days are mild and sunny with a light breeze. We celebrate the Virgin of Rosario with bands, parades and dances. At this moment the firecrackers are booming. Soon, it will be time for loved ones to return during Dia de los Muertos. The cempazuchitl is in bloom. All is well in my world and I hope the same for yours.