I decided to go back to where I primarily grew up in Guatemala after satisfying my urge to travel, In hopes of finding a way to combine the stunning designs and craftsmanship ideas that I formed during my travels into fruition. My ultimate goal is brining together wonderful people to create unique and beautiful handcrafted leather and textile product, made here in Guatemala, where I consider my home.
A little background: I studied Ethnobotany (a form of medical Anthropology) at Quest University Canada, which started me on a quest (no pun intended). My conclusions after studying the transfer and loss of traditional ecological knowledge and medicinal knowledge was that one of the largest factors in the loss of this practice in rural areas in Guatemala and around the world, is that the younger generations were not interested in what their grandfather or grandmother had to teach them. The children of these communities were much more interested and or out of necessity tend to migrate to cities leaving behind any heretical knowledge to fade away. These traditional practices not only promote sustainable agriculture, and environmental practices but also provides an affordable source of health care and a potential income given the way western society is opening up to such health care alternatives. The two missing things to help change this, is education of traditional knowledge, weather it be ecological knowledge or artisanal knowledge, and the emphasis of value for medicinal plants and such knowledge as a means of economic relief.
It was because of my studies that I decided that my quest was to find a way in which I can help support or encourage indigenous cultures to survive the modernization of the world today. To help create value in culture. By doing so creating a desire for younger generations to learn their grandmothers and grandfathers trade and make it their own. Hence, I strive to support the local arts and crafts to create value in preserving such talents and culture in hopes to secure its place in the future by creating quality products to share with the global community. From the products that I sell, 10% of all my profits go to Garden Of Hope providing safe green spaces where underprivalleged children can grow up learning the names and uses of medicinal plants and sustainable agriculture.
Eventually I hope to expand my team to include individuals (local artists, leather workers and textile weavers) from more countries around the world to support their craft and to expose their talent and quality work to untouched global markets. At the same time promote and create things that represent the modern person which has evolved but is still routed from traditions all over the world. By combining historical beauty that each country has to offer and creating new beautiful mixtures of the worlds finest indigenous handicrafts we can in a way, represent global unity. So why not create something beautiful together with the common goal to secure a better world?
International Chic with a Guatemalan Touch.
It is truly a blessing to be able to work with people who are not only talented but love what they do. Their enthusiasm and innovation in their craft makes these designs come alive and are imbued with something special.