Postcard From Peru | Stunning Peruvian Textiles
Colour is a key element in my craft. I love nothing more than to work over and layer colour and texture to create a cohesive but not too perfect look. Several years ago I visited Peru and was immediately drawn to the earthy textiles we saw being hand woven in the Sacred Valley markets on the road to Machu Picchu. Made from alpaca, vicuna, guanaco and llama, the indigenous people create incredibly beautiful insulating fleece to protect themselves from the cold and windy elements. Alpaca in particular is hypoallergenic, water resistant, washable, breathable, resists shrinkage and occurs naturally in 22 colours. It is also widely considered to be one of the most luxurious fibers in the world. Unlike some of the factory manufactured textiles we saw in the more touristy places, Sacred Valley’s hand-dyed with natural vegetable dyes and hand woven pieces felt raw, organic and rural – rife with tiny imperfections and bold colourful patterns that, to me, tell a story of ancient artisanship and life in the mountains. Looming by hand takes highly skilled artisans days and days. It was a singular experience to witness the process from start to finish in such a naturally lovely place surrounded by the people and animals that have maintained this symbiotic relationship for centuries. Interspersed with scenes from my visit are some amazing pieces and interpretations of Peruvian textiles in everyday decor.
Key Image: Anne In Sacred Valley 2012