The beautifully crafted and colourful beadwoven bracelet on the bottom left was a gift to Debbie (Widget's Beads) from her neighbour Rachel when she returned from a vacation in Mexico.

Rachel bought it in the little village on La Bufa, a mountain accessed by train from the city of Zacatecas. The "studio and shop" of the remarkable artisan who made it was a hard concrete sidewalk. Rachel took a picture of her offering her handiwork for sale from a cloth on the pavement. She worked diligently all day, making more beaded jewelry. Her beads were in the bag on the low wall behind her.

We can probably assume those were her eight children. Rachel said she watched this family off and on all day; the kids were well behaved and didn't stray far. The only "toys" visible were the plastic sandal held by the boy on the right and perhaps the makeshift pink shawl draped over the head of one of the girls.

The beader is a Huichol Indian from west central Mexico. The Huichols or Wixáritarias they call themselves, are dirt farmers earning a precarious living from a desert dry land which turns into a jungle at other times of the year. As they live near tourist areas, they are able to sell their wonderful bead work to augment their income. Huichol beaded art range from small beaded eggs to colorful and intricately designed large jaguar heads, masks, bowls, animals and figurines. The patterns are symbolic of the Huichol religion and culture.

Picture with kind permission from Rachel. Thanks to Debbie for sharing this story and picture of her bracelet.

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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