Women Artisans of Chichicastenango
Handwoven handbags, fashion accessories and home decor in Central America
"Weaving is a gift our ancestors have given us and we want to preserve it. We want it to be our legacy to our own children.""I'm Maria Morales, and I'm a member of the wonderful Women Artisans of Chichicastenango group. We work hard for what we want and we're united by a single objective — to empower women and support our families.
"We formed the group a few years ago with women from different Maya communities in the Guatemala highlands.
"We're very organized, although this was difficult at first. Today, it's simple – each person has an important position in the group. All the work is divided equally among us. Many of us speak very little Spanish but we all help one another and we're making progress together.
"Our greatest dream is to have more work. This helps us keep our children in school so that one day they can have a job with a decent and stable income. Even more important, we want them to be able to achieve their dreams and work at things that impassion them.
"Weaving is a gift our ancestors have given us and we want to preserve it. We want it to be our legacy to our own children.
"As a group, we've had some tough times. At first, we didn't sell anything. We couldn't sell in the markets, as we didn't have a stall of our own. But little by little, we began finding shoppers who liked our textiles and who trusted us enough to place orders. Today, they are still our customers.
"We believe we can achieve many things together but this is a process. We always help one another. It seems like one of us always has a difficulty to face but we know that we have the unconditional support of our colleagues. More than a group, we are like a family with many dreams to work toward.
"We hope to go far and we know that we can with God's help and your purchases. We feel blessed to have this opportunity to show you our weavings."