We are Maya women artisans from San Juan La Laguna at Lake Atitlán, Guatemala. We create textile art using our botanical dye and backstrap loom weaving traditions to spread beauty and inspire the world.
We live in a culture with few opportunities, especially for women. Many of us never completed school and do not speak Spanish, so we cannot work much outside of our homes. What we know is our craft—generations of local artisan traditions that we learned from our mothers, who learned from their mothers.
We’re rescuing natural dye traditions that were quickly fading in our parents’ generation. And we’re preserving local weaving techniques that have been passed down from mother to daughter for generations.
The sales of our products help us break the cycle of poverty. But we weave not only to meet our family’s most basic needs of education and alimentation. We weave to preserve our Tz’utujil Maya traditions, to flex our female power, and to bring beauty into our lives and share it with the world.
Each of us is the master of different techniques and abilities.The diversity of skills among us allows us to create a great breadth of beautiful products, and to preserve both cultural traditions and the ecological health of our community. We take joy and pride in our craft, gather inspiration from nature, share ideas with one another, and respond to feedback from our customers.
San Juan is a lovely town on the shores of Atitlán, one of the most picturesque lakes in the world. Our town abounds in art galleries and weaving cooperatives, and attracts visitors interested in experiences of immersion in our Tz’utujil Maya culture.
Our workshops are a chance for you to work alongside one of us in the creation of something beautiful. Many have told us their workshop has been the highlight of their trip to Guatemala.
Of course, if you don’t have time for a class, you are welcome to pay us a visit, shop our products, and learn about our craft. Here’s a map to help you find us. We’ll be waiting for you!
Dye thread or an item you provide in a natural plant color of your choice (according to seasonal availability). Cost includes 3-hour workshop, materials, and the thread for you to keep. Add colors for an additional Q100 each (up to 4 total).
Learn from a master! Cost includes 3-hour workshop, materials, and your very own handwoven (by you!) scarf.
While each workshop can be a great experience on its own, they also work well done over a two-day period. On the first day you’ll dye your thread, and on the second day you’ll weave it.
You can sign up using this form.
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Map (in Drive)
We offer a variety of fashion, home, and textile art products. We sell locally out of our shop in San Juan, and are able to do custom designs and fill wholesale orders for retailers. If you’d like to find our products in Guatemala or elsewhere, check out our Partners section.
Download our product catalog.
We love to work with our retail partners and always accept challenges to create custom designs. The following are a few of the partnerships that TinteMaya has formed.
Are you a retailer? Do you know one? We are always looking for buyers who can be long-term partners in our growth. Contact us at TinteMaya@gmail.com to get in touch. If you speak Spanish, please write to us in Spanish so that we can respond to you directly (for English-speaking customers, we work through an independent fair trade sourcing partner). For urgent matters, you may contact us by phone at +502 5101-9423 (Spanish only).
If you’re coming to Guatemala, but not going to make it to San Juan, you can find our products at these places in Antigua—which are also highly recommended places to stay!
We would love to welcome you to our workshop in San Juan. You are welcome to sign up for a half-day workshop or simply come by to shop and learn more about our local cultural, traditional craft, and life in San Juan.
Interested in forming a retail partnership? Planning a trip to San Juan? Whatever the reason, we’d love to hear from you—we will get back to you as soon as we can.