Community Impact: Changing the World

Impact

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead I thought of this Margaret Mead chestnut last week when we learned from our friends at Multicolores, the rug-hooking cooperative in Guatemala, that they have been selected as one of […]

Ritual, Tradition, and What Is Holy

What is holy

Semana Santa, Holy Week, the week before Easter, is a time of amazement and passion in Latin America. I’ve had the good fortune to be in Chiapas, Mexico, for this special time once, and in Guatemala, twice. The memories are vivid and indelible. Nebaj, Quiche, Guatemala It’s early morning before dawn, and a throng of […]

Huipils, Guatemala, Luck, and Love

A Textile Traveler's Guide to Guatemala

The other day, I read a terrific review of Deborah Chandler’s new book A Textile Traveler’s Guide to Guatemala in the Hawaii Handweavers’ Hui newsletter. It was more than a review, though, it was a recognition of Deborah’s expertise in Guatemalan textiles and her deep knowledge of Guatemala, its people and places. I have been a long-time […]

Write Your Own Travel Book

Your own travel book

I’ve had the great good fortune to do quite a bit of international travel in the past couple of decades. There’s a shelf in my workroom of notebooks I’ve jotted in on various trips–Peruvian highlands, Amazon Basin, Oaxaca and Chiapas in southern Mexico, Bolivia, Guatemala. Especially Guatemala, much on my mind these days as I […]

Language of Color, Colors of Dignity

Teach me the language of color, and I will tell you my story. Together, we will tell the world. Rug Money author Mary Anne Wise has been traveling the textile byways in India the last couple of weeks. I’ve loved receiving the occasional missive from her where she reveals a funny moment or details an […]

Meeting Mary Anne

I can’t even remember how it happened. It was 2009. Mary Anne Wise, whom I’d never met, said, “Would you like to come to Guatemala with me?” She was going down on a buying trip to purchase textiles for a trunk show to benefit Friendship Bridge, a microlending organization. I may have expressed some interest […]

Ways of Seeing

Author Mary Anne Wise recently sent me some pictures that did my heart good. She and fellow author Cheryl Conway led a rug-hooking tour in Guatemala last month. On these tours, they partner members of Multicolores, the rug-hooking nonprofit they founded, with North American rug-hooking students. The Guatemalan artists share their techniques and processes with […]

Joy and Rugs Are Woven Fine

Rugs

This is Fatima El Mennouny sitting on her flatwoven picture rug. She lives in a small village at the foot of Morocco’s Anti-Atlas mountains. She’s one artisan featured in Susan Schaefer Davis’s book, Women Artisans of Morocco. A book that is being loaded on a ship in Hong Kong as I write, bound for safe […]

Thinking of Guatemala

Ixchel

Tomorrow, Thrums Books’ photographer Joe Coca and I are flying to Guatemala where we’ll wend our way to rainy Panajachel. Yes, we’re working on another book! It’s hard to keep track, isn’t it? Morocco, China, the Navajo Nation, Guatemala. We’re covering all the textile bases. For this month’s featured textile museum it seemed fitting, given […]

Putting the Funk in Textiles

Funk

For this month’s featured textile museum, we travel to the Florida Institute of Technology in Melbourne, Florida, to visit the Ruth Funk Center for Textile Arts, the only textiles center in the state. I love that a first-rate textile collection lives at a technology institute. Sometimes, technology gets a bad rap, particularly in the realm of […]

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