Uxibal Advocates Mayan Culture
Uxibal means “Sister” in Mayan and sets a new standard for promoting indigenous women through artisanship.
The Guatemalan based company, known for their bohemian chic line of accessories, reflects their culture’s strength and dynamisms. Each piece invokes a destination known for its diverse vistas, balmy climate, and a people known for their vivacity and strength of character. The collections represent the relationship between the women who hand weave the textiles and the promise access to an international market brings to their families and communities.
Britini Port founded the company after working with the Peace Corps on a sustainable agriculture program. Port, a skilled designer and advocate for women’s’ rights, connected to the rural communities and their way of life. The atmosphere of disdain for its women moved Port to create Uxibal.
The company helps women transcend poverty and gender violence by using their own cultural gifts and skill set. Uxibal does this by consistently raising awareness of social injustices, and working with local artisans and skilled workers to create products that translates a way of life into textiles with contemporary appeal.
The artisan luxury of each textile reflects the months it can take for a woman to hand weave a single piece. Britini explains more about the weaving process. “Starting with natural bamboo fiber threads, they hand-dye the fabrics in an ikat-like process, then spin the threads to prepare for the loom and finally weave the colorful threads into beautiful textiles that we use to create our shoes and accessories.”
Uxibal invests in locally-sourced leather smiths and bootmakers. They work from a small workshop in Antigua, Guatemala. The process is extensive and detail oriented, the love and care put into the craftsmanship made discernable by exclusive style and durability.
Britini says of the upcoming exhibition, “We will be featuring our SS18 collection using vibrant handwoven fabrics and traditional Mayan embroideries that are re-imagined into a line of contemporary shoes, handbags and accessories.” The new line was created through artisans partnering with the Mayan Association for Development. This evocative line of textiles will be available to potential buyers at NY NOW’s Artisan Resource August 20-23 at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City.
For more information, please visit www.uxibal.com.