Gold Medal Performance

Gold Medal Performance

The athletes have arrived in Rio. The nations have paraded. The flame has been lit. The Olympics are officially upon us. In the weeks ahead, no doubt we’ll witness amazing athletic prowess, hear about great speeds and sportsmanship, and tally the medals. I’ll admit I love the Olympics. They are proof that people from the most […]

Across Borders

Across Borders

I came back from the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe at the beginning of the week bursting with the joy of it all—the music, the dancing, the color, the artisans and the crowds they had attracted, all embracing the beauty and importance of handmade goods from around the world. At the same time, across […]

Broadcloth, Stitches, Seven Centuries, and the World


For seven centuries, the city of Leiden in the southern Netherlands has been associated with woven cloth. During its peak production in the 16th and 17th centuries, Leiden manufactured over 180 different kinds of fabric, employing thousands of textile workers from the Netherlands, Europe, and England. Leiden broadcloth was known throughout the world and the last […]

A Mother’s Gift

Teaching textile traditions is a gift mothers pass down to their children (okay, dads can get in on it, too, but that’s a story for another day). Whether in Guatemala, Mexico, or Peru—and I’m learning in Morocco, Laos, and Afghanistan, too—for centuries, mothers have been teaching their daughters to weave, to spin, to dye, to embroider. Passing down these skills […]

Weaving a Heritage

Weaving a Heritage

This month our featured museum is one that may not be the easiest to visit, but it is most definitely one that you should know about. Kurdish Textile Museum In 2004, Lolan Sipan founded the non-profit Kurdish Textile Museum  in the Kurdistan city of Erbil—a place some say is the oldest, continually-inhabited city in the […]

Cultural Crossings

Cultural Crossings

Threads There are many threads to this story. First, there’s Mary Anne Wise, master hooked-rug artist, and her calling to do something to help a village in Guatemala that was covered by a mudslide during Hurricane Stan in 2006. There’s her friend and partner, Jody Slocum, who heads an NGO called Farmer to Farmer, fostering […]

Oaxaca Textiles: A Collector’s Item


We’re in full production mode for our two new books due out in October. One is Eric Mindling’s book of gorgeous photographs and vignettes of the people and cloth of Oaxaca, Mexico. The book is an invitation to view the world as perhaps you never have—you will love what you see. In our second book, […]

Preservation or Innovation: What’s Best for Textile Traditions?


I get the best email. Dear Linda, Here’s a question that has been wandering around in the back of my mind ever since I went to Peru a couple of years ago. I’m a weaver, knitter, and sewist, so I love this stuff. In the Sacred Valley, we saw Nilda Callanaupa and her merry band […]

Tying the Knot—Macramé in Mexico

Pantelho blouse

I bought these two little macramé bands in a thatched hut near the Maya ruins at Cobá, deep in the flat, dense jungle of the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico. This was more than twenty years ago, before friendship bracelets took the world by storm. In a wasteland of crude, redundant tourist goods, the fine craftsmanship […]

Just Cross-Stitch Reprise

When I was about seven years old, my mother gave me a cross-stitch kit for Christmas. Along with several skeins of embroidery floss, it had a piece of cotton fabric stamped with the pattern of a little house, some flowers, and the motto “Home Sweet Home.” Oh, I struggled. I didn’t know to make all […]

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