Woven was born of the curiosity of a group of travellers and activists, who wanted to understand the phenomena, discovering a very unbalanced reality. Thus, they decided to join forces and use their know-how in digital marketing and international trade to promote greater justice and boost the artisanal work of Guatemalan women already in the art-craft business, usually greatly exploited by intermediaries. They help design the product by providing inspiration based on fashion trends such as colours or trendy pieces and provide an online store that sells at a fair price the work of independent and artisan weavers at Lake Atitlán. Their mission is to protect the cultural heritage, the environment and the living culture of Guatemalan women through the arts, and it already has branches in neighbouring Mexico, also contributing to start training a group of weavers in Chiapas.
On our trip through Guatemala, we will visit one of these women weavers’ cooperatives. They are independent and artisanal cooperatives where women weave in front of our eyes and offer the fruit of their labour at the fair price that pays the natural materials, without the greedy commissions of the intermediaries. This experience will potentially change the way we will see the souvenirs from now on and the way we haggle over the value of handicrafts. By encouraging these women weavers, visiting, publicising and valuing what they do, we are contributing to their economic sustainability. The traditional textiles are a tribute to the nature and culture of the place that enters our hearts without asking for permission, has a reduced environmental impact, as opposed to the imitations that begin to flood markets and high social value, being the exclusive source of income of many Mayans. Casa Flor Ixcaco, a pop-up store, also provides education and support for children in San Juan La Laguna through scholarships and financial aid. By purchasing Woven weaving products, we help women weavers to ensure a better future for their children so they can finish school. Besides, part of the revenue from online sales reverts to another group, in Chiapas, Mexico, for the same purpose.
Travel with us to Guatemala, and you’re already helping!
The best contribution we can make is to be available to understand this reality and to respect the artisanal work. That alone will make all the difference and will influence more people to act sustainably. You can also buy pieces of work, either on the website or directly.
The Women of Casa Flor Ixcaco need to diversify their sources of income and for this, they have the dream of developing homestays and programs of weaving classes, and natural dyeing processes. Currently, the accommodations are not ready for lodging. Woven asks for donations to support the homestay project, which suggests being made directly through gifts in kind to women, to their homes. Know more about this project on their website.