"I don't use any chemicals because I want to contribute to the preservation of the environment and our planet. I make the colors from natural elements such as leaves, seeds and flowers."
"Hola! I was born and raised in Teotitlán del Valle, home of the legendary Zapotec rugs. It is a beautiful place and I have fond memories of growing up with my five siblings and parents, all of them artisans. I wasn't able to finish school due to financial difficulties, but I knew I wanted to perfect my skills weaving rugs. My brothers are Gregorio and Alberto, Novica featured artists, and I'm related to the Ruiz Bazan Family.
"I started learning when I was 12 years old because I’ve always been intrigued with this Zapotec legacy of ours. Now I enjoy creating my own designs as it represents a way of self-expression. I remember the first rug I ever made, it was 15" x 19" in red hues and it takes place of pride in my home.
"Everyone criticized the second design I made for the colors I used even and yet it's the one that sold the most!
"I've been dedicated to this craft since 1999 and now I even have my own workshop where people can come and see that my art is natural, cheerful and inspired by the sunset.
"After shearing the sheep we clean and wash the wool so we can card it large wire combs so its soft and then we can spin it on a wood spinning wheel. We wash it again with a plant called amole which makes a lot of foam and grows here in the mountain. That way the wool doesn't lose its purity. If we were to wash it with a commercial soap, the wool loses its luster and makes it almost impossible for the natural dyes to take.
"We then let the wool dry prior to dying with such organic pigments as cochineal, pomegranate peelings, oak bark, peelings off the huacal tree, and walnut shell. We take the lichen off the rocks, and we also use flowers. We let the dye stand for about a month and when its ready we bring it to a boil, then we let the hanks of wool soak for about a half an hour and then we let them dry and breathe. We wash them again to stop the discoloring.
"We wrap the wool in reed needles so we can use it in the loom. When we start weaving, a small rug can take us up to three days, whereas a large one can take up to a month and a half.
"I hope you like my rugs, because I weave them with natural wool. I don't use any chemicals because I want to contribute to the preservation of the environment and our planet. I make the colors from natural elements such as leaves, seeds and flowers.
"I would like to thank Novica for this opportunity, I hope I don’t let you down."
Melding from warm to cool, glowing colors form motifs from the pre-Hispanic past. Zosimo Laura arranges them in harmonious bands of soft wool. Precisely woven on the handloom, they form a dramatic rug of extraordinary beauty.
Sonik Sethi presents a spectacular rug where stars glow with artistic energy. Underscored by blue and green hues, the wool rug is woven on a traditional loom featuring a cotton warp, taking up to four days to complete.
Filled with the spirit of Oaxaca, this rug is inspired by the Sierra Madre embracing ancestral diamond motifs. Delfina Ruiz demonstrates Mexico's Zapotec artistry and her own weaving skills with this dramatic design. Created of virgin wool on a traditional....read more
Fiery hills arise from deep green meadows in a beautifully stylized design. By David Laura Zanabria, this handwoven accent rug takes its influence from the Wari culture. Its precise geometry and brilliant color make it a focal point in any setting.
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