Carmen Barriga was born in the small village of Santa Cruz, Michoacan, which is located in the Lake Patzcuaro region of the P'urepecha Highlands. Proud of her indigenous culture, Carmen has been working with embroidery arts since she was a young child. Now in her early 40's, she is part of the women's collective in Santa Cruz, which includes around 11 women from her community.
This exquisite pillow case was hand-embroidered by P'urepecha artist Carmen Espinosa Barriga of Santa Cruz, Michoacan Mexico. The embroidery work of the Lake Patzcuaro region of Michoacan's highlands traditionally feature village scenes and celebrations, such as Carnaval, Christmas, Corpus Christie. Weddings, Dia de Muertos and more! The village scenes are idyllic and depict daily life, with cook pots and tortillas being made over open fire pits, wells for water, flower and vegetable gardens, domestic animals, and the butterfly fishermen that Lake Patzcuaro is so famous for. The hours of labor that goes into one piece is hard to count, let alone the many years it takes to master the embroidery stitches and techniques for making these designs come to life. Please hand-wash your pillow cases and iron from the back. These piece should be kept out of direct light, as the sun will fade them. We warn you - once you start collecting these, it will be difficult to stop. The enchanting designs are so fun to study - some may have you guessing. If that is the case, please ask us and if we don't know - we will ask one of the artists! Thank you for supporting Indigenous Artists!
This festive piece depicts important celebrations and dances. There are wedding scenes, the dance of the bull (middle panel on the bottom has a man with an orange bull over his head). There is the dance of the old men (Danza de los Viejitos) - which are the two men in the bottom right panel with their canes. Celebration is the most important reason for being alive - and in Mexico, this is something people take very seriously!
This piece measures approximately 14 x 19.5 inches. This piece does not come with the stuffing. If you cannot find the right size pillow case for this piece, we recommend purchasing a cheap pillow, then cutting the ends to remove however much stuffing is necessary. Once you have the right amount of stuffing to fill the pillow, carefully fold the ends of the casing in, and sew shut before putting it inside the pillow. It is important to keep the inner stuffing inside another case, as you will want to wash your pillow case eventually!
Always hand-wash these pieces. We suggest setting the dyes in a vinegar solution before you wash it for the first time.
Wash in a gentle soap, and lay flat to dry. Do not expose to bright sunlight, as it will cause the colours to fade.
Iron your piece from the back.