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The Ancient Tradition of Maya Weaving in the 21st Century

May 15, 2018

Maya women in Guatemala continue to practice forms of backstrap weaving that have thrived in Central America for centuries, even adapting them to more contemporary uses like handbags.

Weaving with the help of backstrap or belt looms is a Maya textile tradition dating back centuries that endures to this day in parts of Central America. In parts of Guatemala, Maya women continue this ancient practice and have adapted it to the creation of less traditional clothes and accessories by incorporating contemporary design elements. One of the people who has helped popularize this fusion of styles and aesthetics is Alida Boer, a former Miss Guatemala who in 2012 founded the handbag company Marias.

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