Who are the Wayuu?
The Wayuu artisan people are the largest indigenous manufacturing community of the Americas. Most tribesmen and women reside along the northern territory of Colombia and Venezuela. There are approximately 270,000 people belonging to the indigenous group living in Colombia alone.
The Wayuu are descendants of the Caribs and Arawaks, largely known for their strong weaving tradition. Thus the Wayuu carry on this traditional weaving from their ancestors today. Weaving and crocheting make part of their daily life.
Most of the women presently weave or will do it at some point through their lifetime. The men participate in the industry as well; they make the straps, provide the materials, and transport the goods to the city centers. The tribe produces millions of high-quality artisan products every year. This artisan weaving industry plays a vital role in the local economy, specifically, the mochila.
Sparks+Brags is proud to support the Wayuu artisans. We purchase their beautiful, handwoven straps and hats directly from the artisans in an effort to support their communities and culture.