A favorite for scarf season

*** Discount code at the very bottom ūüėė***

We love all our products, but we’re so excited that this chilly season the top favorite has been the newest scarf addition, our Corte Wrap. ¬†It’s beautiful and cozy, but more that that, we are including two different groups of artisans in its production – the weavers who prepare the naturally-dyed cotton thread, and the embroiderers who do all the amazing embroidery work, stitch by stitch ‚̧ԳŹ


Francisca with the naturally-dyed thread her cooperative prepares.  She liked the finished prototype!


Embroidery master sisters at work!


Stitch by stitch…


And the result is a super soft, cozy scarf ‚̧ԳŹ


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Kelly from Cardamom Collective snatched one of our prototypes!


Adrienne shows off her Corte Wrap AND her Quetzal Backpack ūüėÜ


Rachel and Laura both got a hold of these beauties with red stripes…¬†lucky them!

Want your own?  Use discount code SCARFLOVE for $20 off your own Corte Wrap just until January 25, 2017.



Photoshoot Fun: New Corte Wraps

Oh, Antigua, you are so picturesque. ¬†We took these shots literally right outside my house. ¬†Actually, I¬†took these photos (with my friend Laura’s help, because I asked her to model this time around)! ¬†I’ve never considered myself a photographer, but I could get used to this… so much fun! ¬†Especially after a week of avoiding the crazy streets for Semana Santa, it was great to enjoy a much calmer day in town.

Take a look:

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The Corte Wraps are online now!  $90 with embroidery by hand using naturally-dyed cotton thread.

Embroidery Class

When I was about 5 or 6 years old, my parents spent a few months working in the village of Santiago Atitl√°n. ¬†I don’t remember too much about my time there, but I do remember one incident very clearly:

There was a reason why my nickname was Mar√≠a Komatz, “komatz” meaning “snake” in the local Tzutujil language. ¬†I was wild, and loved to climb trees. ¬†So my poor babysitter had to find a way to entertain me… with embroidery.

I loved it. I have no idea what pattern I was working on, but I remember being very concentrated, careful with every needle movement. ¬†After what seemed to Little Mari like hours, I was finally pleased with my work and decided that I was done…. only to find out that during my careful stitching I had managed to stitch the fabric¬†right onto my jeans!

I’m pretty sure I cried after that.

It took 23 years for me to get over that Embroidery Trauma.  But with Kakaw Designs working now with a group of embroidery specialists in Sumpango, I figured I needed to overcome my fears.  So last weekend, I went for a special embroidery class with a friend.


Learning from Claribel and Tomasita

Turns out, I love embroidery! ¬†It takes lots of concentration for sure, but it also has a meditative effect… My friend Laura loved it, too. ¬†She was actually SO concentrated that she was silent for much of the class.


That day we didn’t get to finish all the work, but¬†since then we have finished the embroidery at home. ¬†They will soon be turned into little pouches, and we can’t wait! ¬†We’ll have to reserve the pouches for something very special.


Thank you, Claribel, Tomasita, and Luqui for all your¬†help and patience! ¬†Also… notice my dress? ¬†Tomasita embroidered it ūüôā

What should we embroider next? ¬†Laura has gotten inspired and already finished a flamingo and a whale, on two different shirts. ¬†They’re adorable! ¬†I’m thinking little animals, too, in pouch form as gifts to my fellow pet-loving friends. ¬†How cute would THAT be? ¬†ūüôā




Handmade Pendant Collaboration with Cardamom Collective

We’re so excited to be working with another artisan-minded company, Cardamom Collective! ¬†We’ve got some really cool collaboration ideas cooking up,¬†starting with these pendants.


These handmade pendants with silver accents have really given a second life to the textile and leather scraps leftover from our boots and bags production.  These are made with a Todos Santos huipil, with bursts of color.

Since Kelly from Cardamom Collective has experience with jewelry-making, it was a natural idea to send some pendants for her to add the finishing¬†touches. ¬†Take a look at these beauties – with Venetian beads, antique coins, and more! ¬†I love how these pieces now encompass so much more than just Guatemala – they’ve turned into international unique pieces with lots of love, and that’s a very special feeling.

Stay tuned and make sure to check out Cardamom Collective as they will be available for sale soon!  Let us know if you want us to put one aside for you.

Bag-free California

This trip back in California, I failed a couple of times.  I failed to take a shopping bag with me!

When the destination is shopping, to the farmer’s market or grocery store, I know to take a bag with me. ¬†That’s pretty simple. ¬†But when I’m just walking around San Francisco and I find something in a little store unexpectedly (like vintage leather gloves or a handmade little notebook, both excellent finds!)… that’s when I realize I failed. Now that California stores have to ask if the consumer wants a bag, and they charge for them, I am always reminded of my failure. FAIL.

But I love that California has taken this big step in the green direction. ¬†Having lived on small islands, I’ve seen the effects plastic bags can have on marine life¬†and birds… ¬†There’s just no need to create so much waste.

Now I carry a Mercado Bag with me everywhere I go, just in case I find another treasure somewhere.  Lesson learned.



Get your own Mercado Bag – only $25 each, handmade in Guatemala.