THE EMMA BAG
THE EMMA BAG
La Guajira desert, located in northeastern Colombia and northwestern Venezuela, has been the traditional territory of the Wayuu indigenous group, even since before the arrival of the Europeans to America. The Wayuu are currently the largest indigenous group of these two countries, and one of which preserves and protects its culture the most.
Historically, this indigenous group has been semi-nomadic, reason why its members mobilize through their territory, according to the seasons of rain and drought. Its main economic activities are the grazing of goats, hunting, fishing and horticulture. Weaving, a traditional activity and shaft of the Wayuu social and personal life, has become slowly a form of gaining additional income for families of this indigenous group. Crafts like this mochila (bag) are woven by women, and it took around 30 days for them to complete it.
The designs of this type of handcrafts evoke the daily life of the Wayuu society, and its artisans get inspired by those cultural and natural elements that surround them.
It is our goal to help sustain the cultural heritage of this indigenous group. For many of the Wayuu women that we work with, the crafts they make are a key economic resource, and that is why it is so important to empower these artisans through direct trade. Each purchase contributes to the conservation of ancestral traditions and income generation for this culture and its members.