Tag Archives: guatemala

  • The Colourful Life (& Death) in Guatemala

    Posted on 07/05/2014 by A Rum Fellow

    Every bit of Guatemalan life is colourful. The sun beams down on lush greenery with vibrant flowers abundant, ancient American school buses get the coolest flashy paint jobs imaginable (the original yellow is far too dull), and every person effortlessly pulls off wearing a kaleidoscope of colour that would likely get you arrested in France.

    We find that all this colour can brighten your outlook, it can liven up even the darker sides of life. The perfect example is this Guatemalan cemetery on the shore of Lake Atitlan. If I had the choice between ending up in a monochrome British graveyard or in this party cemetery, I know which I'd chose!


    This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with colour, guatemala, lake atitlan, cemetery, panajachel, color

  • Natural Plant Dyeing in Guatemala

    Posted on 02/04/2014 by A Rum Fellow

    We spent a wonderful day visiting a textile cooperative and learning how they produce their natural dyes. San Juan La Laguna, on Lake Atitlan, specialises in natural dying, a process that artisans have experimented with and perfected over many years. Many of the plants used are local, some even grew in the back garden like the orange flowering sacatincta plant below. The sacatincta produces different colours depending on how long the yarn is boiled in it, starting with blue, then into grey and finally a charcoal colour.

    Indigo dye is achieved with the anil plant, which also grows around the lake. It is first dried in the sun, then ground into a fine blue powder (you can see both forms below).

    The yellow flower of the chilcba makes a yellow dye and is also used for medicinal purposes. The first batch to be dyed will come out the strongest in colour.

    Alamo, the bark of a poplar tree, is used to produce a mustard and a cappuccino colour depending on how long it is boiled for.




    This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with guatemala, lake atitlan, fabric, dye, natural dye, indigo, san juan la laguna, cooperative

  • A Guatemalan Adventure

    Posted on 05/03/2014 by A Rum Fellow

    Each year we will introduce a collection inspired by travels to a new country or region. We have just returned from adventures in Guatemala where we have discovered many beautiful things and met lots of wonderful people. Guatemalans are the best! We have lots of lovely things to share with you, but lets start at the beginning.

    We stopped in to watch weavers in Santa Caterina on the shore of Lake Atitlan. Here we saw how they embroiderer patterns into the textile as they weave it. From humble tools the weavers here produce the most incredible textiles.

    The tools of the trade are set up and ready to go. The well worn leather backstrap attaches around the back of the weaver and keeps the warp threads tensioned.

    Because hand weaving isn't complicated enough, Mayan weavers embroider as they go. Colourful threads are embroidered whilst they weave the weft thread, overlaying patterns onto the textile.

    Stay tuned for more tales and textiles from this beautiful land.

    This post was posted in Uncategorized and was tagged with Weaving, backstrap, embroidery, guatemala, santa caterina, lake atitlan, textile

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