Santiago Atitlán Blue Huipil

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Huipiles of Santiago Atitlán are most easily recognized by the presence of birds to represent the many species in the region, both resident and migratory. They are embroidered over a base cloth of handwoven striped fabric. Blue has special meaning to the indigenous people of the area due to their close proximity to Guatemala’s well-known Lake Atitlán. Vertical stripes are usually simply woven on a backstrap loom in a different color, but the horizontal stripes—known as “weft” stripes—are woven with a more complicated weaving technique which uses multiple heddle sticks. The result is tiny, intricate zigzags, checkerboards, and other patterns that are woven into the fabric. Traditionally, Santiago Atitlan huipiles are white but in the past 30 years, artisans have also branched out to weave the huipiles on blue or lavender backgrounds. Santiago Atitlán is the center of Maya Tz’utujil culture. The Maya are the largest indigenous group in Central America, and Santiago Atitlán is a haven for a wide range of artisans including oil painters, woodcarvers, leather workers, beaders, and weavers; local stores and street markets are filled with their work today.

*Please note: this is a pre-order. Santiago Atitlán Blue Huipil will be delivered in 2 months after confirming your order.

Handmade in Santiago Atitlán, Sololá by Julia.

Measurements: 21" W, 20" H.

Material: 100% cotton.

ENGLISH: Julia, now a mother of six children, married a local seafood farmer when she was 18. In order to offer her children better opportunities, she started a textile business. Today, Julia employs 18 people in addition to her family, in production of fabrics for huipiles. Her husband works alongside her. “Friendship Bridge has been a great blessing in my life during all these years,” says Julia. “I have had capital for my business, they have trained me in business administration, to value myself as a woman, and learn about my rights.”

ESPAÑOL: Julia, ahora madre de seis hijos, se casó con un mariscador local cuando tenía 18 años. Para ofrecer a sus hijos mejores oportunidades, puso en marcha un negocio textil. En la actualidad, Julia da empleo a 18 personas, además de a su familia, en la producción de tejidos para huipiles. Su marido trabaja junto a ella. “Puente de la Amistad ha sido una gran bendición en mi vida durante todos estos años”, dice Julia. “He tenido capital para mi negocio, me han capacitado en administración de empresas, a valorarme como mujer y a conocer mis derechos”.

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