Monday, 9 March 2015

Mexican Silk

We tend not to think of Mexico when we think of where in the world silk comes from. But in many ways, it's an ideal place to raise silk. Typically the indigenous weavers have woven their work largely from either cotton or wool, using the silk as inlays for the decorative bits.

During a recent trip to Teotitlan, in the state of Oaxaca, I managed to track down a man who has a very small scale sericulture endeavour. He raises the silk worms, and then his wife handspins the silk into this spectacular, lumpy yarn. His production is so limited that he looked completely baffled when I asked if I could purchase a small amount. This spool was hand-wound, and the man and his son had to put their heads together to figure out what to charge me. Oh my, how dear is that?
Here are 2 images. One is of a traveler spinning some of this precious silk; the other is of the local lady doing same. Can you tell which is which? Who has the better technique? Or posture, for that matter???

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