Chip Morris: Tribute to an Unforgettable Man

You have to imagine this: Chip Morris, scruffy, sometimes cranky author of A Textile Guide to the Highlands of Chiapas is standing in the plaza before the church in San Andrés Larrainzar, Chiapas, telling stories. He’s telling in English, but tossing off comments to passing locals in their own Tzotzil language.The story that sticks in […]

Not a Cinco de Mayo Celebration

My Friends in Mexico

Around the world, especially here in the U.S., folks are donning sombreros and sipping margaritas in honor of Cinco de Mayo. While the world celebrates the 1862 victory of Mexico over French forces at the Battle of Puebla, oddly enough, it’s a little-celebrated event in Mexico itself. So on this fifth of May, we’ve decided […]

A Morality of Cloth

for Linda and Deborah Old friends corresponding in two languages amusingly mistake the word morals (those particular values of right and wrong) with morrales (those lovely bags of Mesoamerica). One writes: “Would that we could create morals from strong thread and skilled hands.” But what could be more moral than thread spun in memory of ancestors, […]

Best Places on Earth

Earth Day

“There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature–the assurance that dawn comes after night and spring after winter. ” Rachel Carson In celebration of Earth Day, we wanted to share some of our favorite places on earth—and some of our favorite people in those places. People who know the infinitely healing refrains of […]

Meet the Author: Carol Karasik

Carolus karasikii This is an unusual species with only one known member. Carolus karasikii, commonly known as Carol Karasik, can be found in the jungles of eastern Chiapas, the cobbled streets of San Cristóbal, the deserts of the American southwest, the rural villages of Southeast Asia, or the libraries of Washington, D.C. Her plumage is […]

Tradition Translated

Chenalho Huipil

A New Vision of the World In the introduction to A Textile Guide to the Highlands of Chiapas, author Chip Morris writes that Maya women are “Creating new visions of themselves and the world, visions that are affirmations of tradition translated into something new, resilient, and hopeful.” Of course, he’s talking specifically about Maya weavers, […]

Huipils and Magic: Memories of Mexico

huipil, Chiapas, Mexico

Handmade in Chiapas As Maya huipils go, those from Oxchuc in the highlands of Chiapas, Mexico are not my personal favorites. They’re characterized by bold graphic stripes, often crimson on white, with odd embroidered points at the neckline. Chip Morris, author of Textile Guide to the Highlands of Chiapas, argued that the points should be […]